Ryan Coogler’s Mysterious Vampire Movie Could Beat Marvel’s Blade to the Punch

2025 could be the year of the bloodsucker.

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 23: Ryan Coogler speaks onstage at the Marvel Cinematic Universe Mega-P...
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Not all is well at Marvel Studios. The franchise is amid a “quiet retooling,” which has seen it scale back to (hopefully) address some of its most glaring issues. As a result, some of Marvel’s highly anticipated films have been pushed back a full year, with Blade — the franchise’s most troubled production — capping off a fresh slate in 2025.

It’s nice to know that Marvel is finally taking the quality-over-quantity approach, but it’s also frustrating to watch Marvel’s most promising project struggle to reach the finish line. Blade was first announced back in 2020; by the time it hits theaters, it will have been in development for half a decade. Its recent obstacles have been well-publicized, from a few major creative shake-ups to big budget cuts. There’s every chance Blade will eventually overcome all that and go on to become one of Marvel’s best films. Until the vampire hunter finally appears on screen, though, fans have turned their attention to another upcoming vampire project.

Marvel alum Ryan Coogler has finally lined up his latest film. As a director, his plate has been relatively light, but after delivering a satisfying follow-up to 2018’s Black Panther with its sequel, Wakanda Forever, Coogler is pivoting to his first original project in years.

Blade star Mahershala Ali has shared some positive updates, but Marvel’s most troubled project is still retooling.

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The filmmaker is teaming up with frequent collaborator Michael B. Jordan for his upcoming project. Plot details are scarce, but the yet-untitled film is rumored to bring vampires to the Jim Crow-era South. Jordan might play a pair of vampire twins who might fight the Klu Klux Klan... and if the official synopsis is at all in line with the theories, then Coogler’s supernatural thriller could be his most exciting film yet.

Per The Hollywood Reporter, Warner Bros. is eyeing a March 2025 release date. That puts it months ahead of Marvel’s Blade, set to premiere in November that same year. That proximity, as well as the shared subject matter, attracts obvious comparisons between the two projects.

Coogler’s love for Marvel Comics is well-documented, especially when it comes to the franchise’s anti-heroes. Could he have been inspired by Marvel’s resident Daywalker? Maybe his script originally began as a Blade pitch. It’s possible, as Marvel occasionally brings its best directors back for other projects. Whatever happened behind the scenes, though, Coogler made a smart choice to set the film in his own world. In an age of exhausting superhero fatigue, we need all the original storytelling we can get. Standalone stories have an edge now, and that’s especially evident with Coogler’s project hitting theaters before the long-gestating Blade.

Of course, there’s not really a competition between these two films. Vampires are having a bit of a moment right now, and the more diversity within the subgenre, the better. What’s more, there will always be enthusiasm for Blade, so the projects can hopefully coexist. 2025 could be a banner year for supernatural thrillers, so long as Marvel sticks to its guns and gets Blade out in November.

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