Blade is a 1998 American superhero horror film directed by Stephen Norrington and written by David S. Goyer. Based on the Marvel Comics superhero of the same name, it is the first installment of the Blade franchise.
The film stars Wesley Snipes as the titular character with Stephen Dorff, Kris Kristofferson and N’Bushe Wright in supporting roles.
In the film, Blade is a Dhampir, a human with vampire strengths but not their weaknesses, who together with his mentor Abraham Whistler and hematologist Karen Jenson, fights against vampires, namely the exceptionally vicious Deacon Frost.
Released on August 21, 1998, Blade was a commercial success, grossing $70 million at the U.S. box office, and $131.2 million worldwide.
Despite mixed reviews from film critics, the film received a positive reception from audiences and has since garnered a cult following. It is also hailed as one of Snipes’ signature roles.
It was followed by two sequels, Blade II and Blade: Trinity, both written by Goyer who also directed the latter. Blade was a dark superhero film for its time.
The success of Blade began Marvel’s film success and set the stage for further comic book film adaptations.