Marvel has found its Blade director. After first tapping Oscar-winning actor Mahershala Ali to star in the highly anticipated vampire movie back in 2019, Deadline reports that Marvel has hired Bassam Tariq to helm the film. As previously announced, Stacy Osei-Kuffour is writing the script for the film, and Deadline notes that originally Marvel considered hiring a writer-director for Blade before deciding to split those duties.
Intent on hiring a person of color for Blade, Marvel met with various directors over the last few months, and Tariq won the job after giving his presentation for his vision of what a Blade movie should be. Tariq is an up-and-coming filmmaker who has only helmed two films to date, the 2013 documentary These Birds Walk and the 2020 drama Mogul Mowgli starring Riz Ahmed.
Marvel has increasingly been tapping up-and-comers for their Phase 4 films and TV shows, with Kate Herron recently knocking Loki out of the park and Candyman filmmaker Nia da Costa at the helm of the Captain Marvel sequel The Marvels. That’s not to say Marvel is leaving behind more seasoned directors — Sam Raimi is directing Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, and Taika Waititi and James Gunn are directing respective Thor and Guardians of the Galaxy sequels — but it’s exciting to hear that new blood, so-to-speak, will be bringing Blade to life.
Production on the film is expected to begin in 2022, and while Sony Pictures will technically beat Marvel Studios to the punch with a Marvel vampire movie in the form of Jared Leto‘s Morbius, this new Blade will introduce vampires to the Marvel Cinematic Universe in a big way.