|Written by||David S. Goyer|
|Distributed by||New Line Cinema|
|Box office||$417 million|
Blade is a film and television franchise based on the fictional Marvel Comics dhampiric vampire hunter of the same name, starring Wesley Snipes as Blade in the original trilogy, and Sticky Fingaz in the television series. The original trilogy was directed by Stephen Norrington, Guillermo del Toro and David S. Goyer, the latter of whom also wrote the films and served as a co-writer for the first and last two episodes of the television series. The original films and television series were distributed by New Line Cinema from 1998 to 2006.
The character was created in 1973 for Marvel Comics by writer Marv Wolfman and artist Gene Colan as a supporting character in the 1970s comic The Tomb of Dracula. In the comic, Blade's mother was bitten by a vampire while she was in labor with Blade, rendering him immune to being turned into a vampire; following the release of Blade; the character was retroactively made into a dhampir and redesigned to match his film counterpart. A reboot within the continuity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is expected to be released in 2023.
|Film||U.S. release date||Director(s)||Screenwriter(s)||Producer(s)|
|Blade||August 21, 1998||Stephen Norrington||David S. Goyer||Robert Engelma||Peter Frankfurt||Wesley Snipes|
|Blade II||March 22, 2002||Guillermo del Toro||Patrick Palmer|
|Blade: Trinity||December 8, 2004||David S. Goyer|
Meanwhile, in the urban underworld, a feud is started between "pure-blood" vampires and those who had been human, but were "turned." Blade becomes aware of this and investigates further, uncovering a plot to raise the blood god La Magra, something he must stop at all costs.
Blade II (2002)
A rare mutation has occurred within the vampire community. "Reapers" are vampires so consumed with an insatiable bloodlust that they prey on vampires as well as humans, transforming victims who are unlucky enough to survive into Reapers themselves. Now their quickly expanding population threatens the existence of vampires, and soon there won't be enough humans in the world to satisfy their bloodlust. Blade, Whistler and an armory expert named Scud are curiously summoned by the Shadow Council. The council reluctantly admits that they are in a dire situation and they require Blade's assistance. Blade then tenuously enters into an alliance with The Bloodpack, an elite team of vampires who were trained in all modes of combat to defeat Blade. They'll use their skills instead to help wipe out the Reaper threat. Blade's team and the Bloodpack are the only line of defense which can prevent the Reaper population from wiping out the vampire and human populations.
Blade: Trinity (2004)
In the final installment of the series, the vampires succeed in framing Blade for the killing of a human (who was in fact a familiar being used as bait). Blade, now in the public's eye and wanted by the FBI, is forced to join forces with the Nightstalkers, a human clan of vampire hunters. Blade, Hannibal King, and Abigail Whistler go after Danica Talos, who has succeeded in locating and resurrecting Drake, also known as Dracula, the first vampire and by far the most powerful. In order to stop him, Blade has to release a virus that will wipe out all vampires, but being a dhampir, he must face the possibility of also dying as a result.
In October 2008, Blade director Stephen Norrington was confirmed to be developing a prequel trilogy to Blade, featuring Stephen Dorff reprising his role as Deacon Frost. However, by August 2012, the film rights to Blade had reverted to Marvel Studios.
In October 2016, star of the Underworld film series Kate Beckinsale stated that a crossover film between the franchises had been discussed as a sequel to Blade: Trinity with Snipes returning, but was declined because Marvel Studios had plans to introduce the character into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Snipes in the Marvel Cinematic Universe
In May 2013, The Hollywood Reporter reported that Marvel had a working script for Blade. By July 2015, Snipes said he hoped to reprise the role in any future film and had discussed this with Marvel. On July 20, 2019, at the San Diego Comic-Con, Marvel Studios announced that it would be rebooting the character and integrating Blade into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), with Mahershala Ali being cast as the title character.
|First released||Last released|
|Blade: The Series||1||13||June 28, 2006||September 13, 2006||David S. Goyer||Spike|
Blade: The Series (2006)
In 2006, Spike TV aired a thirteen-episode series set after the events of Blade: Trinity, with Sticky Fingaz portraying Blade, replacing Snipes. Goyer (who wrote the scripts for all three of the films and directed the third film) also created the series.
Cast and crew
|Blade||Stephen Norrington||Peter Frankfurt
Andrew J. Horne
|David S. Goyer||Mark Isham||Theo van de Sande||Paul Rubell|
|Blade II||Guillermo del Toro||Peter Frankfurt
|Marco Beltrami||Gabriel Beristain||Peter Amundson|
|Blade: Trinity||David S. Goyer||Peter Frankfurt
David S. Goyer
|Ramin Djawadi||Conrad Smart|
Howard E. Smith
Box office performance
|Film||Release date||Box office gross||All time ranking||Budget||Reference|
|North America||Other territories||Worldwide||North America|
|Blade||August 21, 1998||$70,087,718||$61,095,812||$131,183,530||#724||$45 million|||
|Blade II||March 22, 2002||$82,348,319||$72,661,713||$155,010,032||#558||$54 million|||
|Blade: Trinity||December 8, 2004||$52,411,906||$76,493,460||$128,905,366||#1,036||$65 million|||
Critical and public response
|Blade||57% (107 reviews)||47 (25 reviews)||A–|
|Blade II||57% (151 reviews)||52 (28 reviews)||B+|
|Blade: Trinity||25% (168 reviews)||38 (30 reviews)||B+|
|Blade: The Series||50% (18 reviews)||49 (15 reviews)||N/A|
|Year||Title||Chart positions||Certifications |
|1998||Blade: Music from and Inspired by the Motion Picture
|2002||Blade II: The Soundtrack
|2004||Blade: Trinity (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
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Marvel has not yet announced a release date for “Blade,” but observers expect the film to debut in the fall of 2023.
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