Why Wesley Snipes refused to shoot scenes for ‘Blade: Trinity’

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Throughout his career, Wesley Snipes has detailed a kind of intensity and prowess with martial arts that has ensured his legacy as an icon of Hollywood. From his early roles in New Jack City and Demolition Man to his comedies like White Men Can’t Jump, Snipes always proved a level of performative versatility.

It’s hard to think of Snipes, though, and not recall his truly iconic performances as Blade in the action movie trilogy between 1998 and 2004. His effort as a human being with the strengths of a vampire but not their weaknesses, draped in leather to a techno soundtrack, remains some of Snipe’s most memorable work.

However, by the time the third film in the franchise rolled around, Blade: Trinity, Snipes had seemingly had enough. He found several issues with the script, and his relationship with David S. Goyer, who had written the first two films and was brought in as director for the third, quickly soured.

Blade: Trinity is the final instalment in the Blade trilogy and tells of the continuing war between humans and vampires as Blade teams up with a group of rogue vampire hunters to face his most fearsome enemy, Dracula, having already been framed for a string of murders by vampire leader Danica.

Ryan Reynold and Jessica Biel were both brought into the cast but delivered some absolutely dreadful performances. In fact, Snipes took issue with them being there at all and believed that two white actors were taking away from his time on screen as a black man, leading to him allegedly calling Reynolds “crackers” on a handful of occasions.

The result was that Snipes began refusing to shoot his scenes for the film, with Goyer having to resort to CGI to add his character to scenes. Patton Oswalt, who also starred in a supporting role, said that Snipes would spend most of his time in his trailer smoking weed, falling out with Goyer and only communicating in notes signed “from Blade.” Clearly, Snipes did not enjoy playing the superhero vampire that time around.

As if all that weren’t bad enough, the year after the film’s release, Snipes sued New Line Cinema and Goyer, claiming that the studio did not pay his salary and that he had been cut out of conversations surrounding the film’s production despite being one of its producers. In a move of sheer irony, one year later, Snipes was sued by his talent agency for failing to fulfil commission agreements on his earnings.

Check out the trailer for Blade: Trinity below.

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