Blade from Marvel Studios is being unveiled once more, but this time by an entirely new creative team.
Yann Demange, who oversaw the groundbreaking horror series Lovecraft Country’s premiere episode on HBO, has been brought on to direct the vampire action thriller that Mahershala Ali is still attached to feature in. A brand-new script for the movie was written by Michael Starrbury, who was nominated for an Emmy for an episode of Ava DuVernay’s drama When They See Us.
After Bassam Tariq (Mogul Mowgli), the project’s original director, passed away in September, the new team resumes work on it. The separation, which was unexpected and caused by creative differences, happened as the film was in pre-production and moving toward an Atlanta production start in November.
Marvel put the project on hold to take a closer look at the mechanics rather than shoving another filmmaker into something that needed an overhaul. That required the production, which struggled during the scripting stage, to start again from page one. Sources claim that Ali personally participated in the decision to choose the author.
Sources claim that the new intention for Blade is for it to be dark and gritty in tone, falling on the edgier side of Marvel material, and perhaps even find common ground with the fondly-remembered Blade flicks created in the early 2000s by New Line. Details are being kept under wraps. Blade’s scheduled September 6, 2024 release date will still be maintained as part of the Atlanta production plan, beginning in 2023.
French-born and London-raised director Demange began his career in television before transitioning into movies with the dramatic thrillers ’71 and White Boy Rick. His work on Lovecraft Country established the show’s ominous and brooding tone and provided a platform for Jonathan Majors and Jurnee Smollett to rocket to stardom while simultaneously tackling racial issues and a variety of horror shocks. He is now working on a series adaptation of David Cronenberg’s groundbreaking horror film Scanners for HBO, which he will executive produce and direct. Both CAA and Goodman Genow are his agents.
The Come Up, a coming-of-age drama written by Starrbury with Lil Rel Howery in the lead role is now in pre-production. Sue Rogers, Circle of Confusion, and CAA are his legal representatives.