Original Blade actor Stephen Dorff may not be impressed with Black Widow, but he still feels that Mahershala Ali will be "incredible" with his debut as a rebooted version of the vampire slayer in the MCU. In the first Blade movie that was released in 1996, Dorff starred as the villain Deacon Frost opposite Wesley Snipes' Blade. Dorff didn't return for the sequel, though Snipes went on to star in the sequels Blade II and Blade Trinity.
Though Snipes had been lobbying to reprise the role of Blade for the MCU, Marvel Studios went with a complete reboot of the character by casting Mahershala Ali in the role. In a recent interview with Zavvi, Dorff addressed the upcoming Blade reboot that's now in early development with Ali already on board. Though he seems leery about the project overall, the actor is confident that Ali will be "great in the role," regardless.
"Mahershala will be incredible doing that, but you need strong writing and direction to help elevate that character, and I don't know what Marvel's vision is for Blade. I just know that Mahershala is a hell of an actor, and that he'll be great in the role."
Reading between the lines here, the original Blade actor doesn't seem to be very confident about what the plans are for the next Blade in the MCU. Though he praises Ali's acting abilities, Dorff seems to suggest that the screenwriter and director may not be quite so good. This is in line with other recent comments made by Dorff heavily criticizing Black Widow, expressing his opinion that the latest Marvel movie "looks like garbage" and that he was "embarrassed for Scarlett [Johansson]."
Though he never got his wish of making a fourth Blade movie, Wesley Snipes also endorsed the casting of Ali in the upcoming reboot. Shortly after the news was announced, some of Snipes' fans had cried foul on social media, as many were hoping for the actor to get one more go as the first Blade. While Snipes may have also been disappointed, he told ComicBook.com in 2019 that he was happy with Ali's casting and even hoped to work alongside him someday.
"Congratulations and Salaam to Mahershala Ali, a beautiful and talented artist whose expressions I look forward to experiencing for many years to come. Inshallah, we will someday work together," Snipes said.
In February, it was reported that Watchmen and Pen15 writer Stacy Osei-Kuffour had been tapped to pen the Blade reboot for the MCU. A director for the project has not yet been named, and at this point, only Ali is attached to the cast. There's no word yet on when the project will start filming, or when Blade will be released in theaters, however, it is said to be aiming for a 2022 release. The movie is one of the more anticipated upcoming titles in the works at Marvel Studios, despite the initial backlash over recasting Snipes.
As for Dorff, the actor's latest interview also includes his thoughts on his movie Embattled, which he feels is the best MMA movie that has ever been developed.