Sink your teeth into this.
It’s been nearly two years since Kevin Feige introduced Mahershala Ali as the MCU’s Blade in Hall H of San Diego Comic Con. While production on the film has still yet to begin – it’s slated to start next July – today, Deadline reports that a director has finally been chosen for the project.
According to the site, Bassam Tariq will helm the project. He previously helmed the indie drama Mogul Mowgli, which starred Academy Award nominee Riz Ahmed.
He is third name join the project following Ali and Stacy Osei-Kuffour (HBO’s Watchmen), who was announced as the film’s writer a few months back.
Despite the franchise surpassing the 20 film mark (25 if you include their Disney+ series), Tariq is only the sixth director of color to helm a Marvel project.
Some of the names initially reported to be circling the role of director for the project included Barry Jenkins, Regina King, J.D. Dillard, and Shaka King. Despite, his work on Black Panther, Ryan Coogler’s name was also in the mix too. While the shortlist of other directors in final contention for the project hasn’t been revealed, Deadline says that it was ultimately Tariq’s unique vision that won Marvel over.
While Tariq is not a household name, that is sure to change as he joins the long list of other indie directors catapulted into the limelight because of their contributions to the MCU.
As of now, both Blade has no official release date, but is still suspected to be a part of the MCU’s fourth phase. We have an even stronger hunch about that considering how vampires were finally confirmed to be a part of the MCU in Episode 4 of Marvel’s first season of Loki.