You know how you have to wait for a while to see the post-credits scene during a Marvel movie because the cast and crew of a major action film is understandably dense? Well, we’ve been waiting even longer for the moment to finally be able to say Marvel Films has a Black woman writer!
According to the Hollywood Reporter, playwright Stacy Osei-Kuffour, who served as writer and story editor on HBO’s award-winning series Watchmen has been tapped to pen the screenplay for Blade, The Vampire Slayer. The upcoming film stars Mahershala Ali and will be a reboot of the existing Blade franchise.
Ali had a hand in the writer pick, as well. THR adds:
The studio has spent the last six months meeting with writers in what was described as a meticulous search, with Ali directly involved. Only Black writers were seriously considered, a reflection of Marvel’s focus on diversity and making representation a key factor—especially when tackling nonwhite characters. (David Goyer wrote the three original Blade movies released by New Line between 1998 and 2004.)
“As they start to make this outreach, studios are finding that people of color have interest in telling all kinds of stories,” ICM literary agent Ava Greenfield said at the time the call for a Black writer for the film was announced back in October. “It’s not necessarily just telling stories featuring trauma onscreen. Black people are also interested in comic books, in superheroes, in interesting histories of Black people as a whole.”
Marvel really is on its representation steez since Nia DaCosta was also announced as the first Black woman to direct one of its films, with the upcoming Captain Marvel 2.
More on Osei-Kuffour’s on-screen background and accolades via THR:
Osei-Kuffour earned an Emmy-nomination for outstanding writing in a comedy series for her work on Hulu’s Pen15. But it was being part of the writing team on Watchmen, HBO’s heady spin on the Alan Moore-Dave Gibbons comic, that got her noticed, as well as a WGA Award win for best new series. She worked on Hunters, Amazon’s blood-soaked limited series that saw Al Pacino and Logan Lerman as Nazi hunters in 1970s America, and HBO crime thriller Run, starring Domhnall Gleeson.
We were already excited due to Ali’s involvement and now that we know an acclaimed Black woman writer is behind the script, we are even more curious and excited! Congrats to Stacy!