Disney and Marvel fulfill fan’s wish: New “Blade” action horror aims for the strictest age restriction

Miracles do happen: As “Blade” director Yann Demange has revealed, he has been given permission by Disney to unleash the vampire hunter Blade completely.

When Kevin Feige, President of Marvel Studios and CCO of Marvel Entertainment, announced a new “Blade” with Mahershala Ali (“Green Book”) in the title role as the half-vampire Daywalker for the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) at the 2019 San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC), the excitement was initially high. After all, the 1998 comic adaptation with Wesley Snipes is considered one of the pioneers of the previously ridiculed subgenre.

However, the joy was short-lived as hints emerged that the new film was intended to be significantly toned down in comparison to the old trilogy with Snipes, aiming for a bloodless PG-13 rating in the USA, which could, in the worst case, correspond to a PG-12 rating. Statements by Feige himself left no other conclusion.

Recently, the status of the Marvel production seemed so dire that one had to wonder if the plug might still be pulled on the project. According to reports, lead actor Mahershala Ali had already backed out when Feige reset the project from scratch after countless script drafts. Previously, Blade was said to not even play second fiddle in his own film (via Variety) – a serious affront. Author Michael Green (“Logan: The Wolverine”) is now tasked with ensuring that the vampire hunter can be completely unleashed and take center stage in cleansing the world of bloodthirsty creatures of the night.

And it has now been abandoned, turning Blade into a children’s room vampire hunter who can only wave his finger, as confirmed by director Yann Demange (“White Boy Rick”) in an interview with Deadline. Marvel Studios has granted him permission to make the film with an aimed R-rating:

“They gave me R, which is hugely important. I want to be more open and more vulnerable and bring a personal aspect to my work. But with ‘Blade,’ we’re going to have fun because Mahershala [Ali] is such a deep actor. I look forward to showing a kind of ruthlessness, a roughness that he carries and allows him to walk through the world in a special way. That’s why I love him. He has dignity and integrity, but there’s a wild side that he usually keeps beneath the surface. I want to unleash that wildness and bring it to the screen.”

With a budget of under $100 million, which is relatively inexpensive for a Marvel film, there is at least financial security that a potential flop will not harm the studio too much. “Blade,” which is set to hit theaters in 2025, may not require many computer effects.

Will “Blade” be part of the new Marvel Spotlight? So, an unrestrained Blade who doesn’t hold back when dealing with the beings that made him who he is. The question arises as to how he can become a part of the MCU, which is known to be family-friendly. Perhaps the upcoming “Blade” could be part of the recently introduced Marvel Spotlight subcategory. This new platform is intended to provide a framework for Marvel productions that do not necessarily need to be part of the larger MCU and do not require prior knowledge. This could also include films and series with a higher level of violence. The first production falling into this category is the Disney+ series “Echo,” which also targets an adult audience.

Interestingly, Marvel is following a DC development here for a change: Under James Gunn, in addition to the new DC Extended Universe (DCU), there will be another universe called DC Elseworlds, where stories can stand on their own without being part of the bigger picture.

This MCU quiz focuses on numerous tragic deaths. Do you still remember how these characters died?

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