Monday, February 10, 2014

Case Study No. 1228: Pearl the Vampiric Archivist

Pearl the Fat Vampire - Blade (original)
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Pearl is an obese vampire at the service of Deacon Frost. He appears in Blade portrayed by Eric Edwards.

Pearl is an incredibly obese vampire, the archivist of the House of Erebus. He secretly helps Deacon Frost in translating the Lost Pages of Herebus, a prophecy regarding the return of La Magra, the Blood God of vampires. He lives in the archives, reached by Frost through an access from one of his clubs.

When Blade and Karen Jenson arrive at the archive, Pearl asks Frost for help, but he's abandoned to his destiny. Tortured with a UVA torch, Pearl tells the two hunters everything about Frost's plan, but Karen, disgusted by his appearance (and by all the farts the vampire makes because of tension) kills him anyway.

Character traits
Pearl is an intelligent and well intructed vampite, the only one, apart Deacon Frost, able to translate the Pages of Herebus. He's quite a coward one, and he relies on other vampires for almost everything.

He's supposed to have all of canonical vampires' powers, but because of his incredibly obese body, he's unable even to move.



Another library villain is the archivist Pearl (Eric Edwards) in "Blade" (1998). She is a vampire and shows her villainy by refusing to help our hero Blade obtain the information that he needs. It requires torture with ultra-violet rays for Blade to get anything out of the archivist, and even then it is not useful information. Pearl is a villain in her refusal to help the good guy, but since she is a bad guy, she is actually a hero among her own people for protecting their information under duress.



Engelman, R., Frankfurt, P. (Producers) & Norrington, S. (Director). (1998). Blade [Motion picture]. United States: New Line Cinema.
This vampire tale features a vampiric archivist named Pearl, whose gender is indeterminate, despite being referred to in the feminine (she is portrayed by a male actor, Eric Edwards). Pearl is in charge of the vampire race’s computerized archives. She believes she is the only one who can translate all of the old texts, until the villain does so and kills her.



One of the more memorable characters from Blade was Pearl, the overly disgusting, vampire record keeper.

We spoke with Eric Edwards about his part in the Blade movie.

The Big Bad Wolf: Does it feel like it has been 10 years already?

Eric Edwards: No. Not at all. When you told me that I was like oh shoot, it has been ten years! That is the best big budget movie I have been in. It had such an impact on filmmaking. It widened the doors to artistic gore. High Tension, The Matrix all seemed to be influenced to it.

Stephen Dorff lit that movie up. I am a big fan of his. It was great to be at the table and read with him. The finished product itself was great.

Steven Norrington also did a fantastic job directing.

The Big Bad Wolf: How did you get involved in Blade?

Eric Edwards: I was one of the few fat guys in town. (laughs) When it came down to negotiation, we tried to pull the fat card. New line was like "Wait a sec, he is in a prosethetic outfit." (laughs) It is basically a voiceover job.

I had a two guys playing each arm. That suit fit three of us in there. It was pretty wild.

The Big Bad Wolf: Did you have any idea who Blade was before the film; Did you read the old Tomb of Dracula comics?

Eric Edwards: No at all. I am geeky and gerdy in different realms. When I was younger, we travelled a lot so I never really collected a lot. I was into cartoons about super heroes.

I used to love the Hulk and Spiderman cartoon. When it came to comics I never got into the alternative genres. If I read anything it would be superhero ones like Spiderman etc.

The Big Bad Wolf: How long did it take you to get into the "Pearl" makeup?

Eric Edwards: It was a five hour job every morning. I would fall asleep in the chair. I would have these really weird dreams of being rained on beacuse they were poking me to get the prosethetics to stick. To get into the suit was actually a 45 minute job.

The Big Bad Wolf: How was it working with Wesley Snipes during the scene?

Eric Edwards: It was awesome. He was very nice. I didn't get to interact with him too much. After the film had wrapped, he invited me to a party they had for the film. He was a pro though. He greenlit me to be in it. So God Bless him!

The Big Bad Wolf: Did everyone share a laugh the first time they saw you as "Pearl"?

Eric Edwards: People were grossed out! I have such a love hate with that kind of character. I was such an overweight guy, that was my perception of myself. After seeing that I lost so much weight.

I love the movie. It is such a great movie that had a huge impact. The actual process of it I felt like "Man, I'm fat. Waah, waah!" (laughs)

It was really a blast though.

The Big Bad Wolf: Looking back, what is your favorite memory during filming?

Eric Edwards: I am herrendous with names, and I feel bad that I don't remember her's, I want to say it was Michelle, but. She was one of the make-up people that I had worked with when I was a production assistant, back in Tucson. Her and that crew had all chipped in to buy me a car to drive out to L.A. to pursue my acting career. It was great to see her again.

Also, I was a big fan of Labrynith. I believe Norrington did the special effects in that movie. Also to work with Stephen Dorff, Wesley Snipes.

Snipes is a great actor, he is also a great action star. It was also just neat to work with a super star, and also know he wasn't much taller than me. (laughs) That dude is ripped! He looks tall on screen, which gives me hope. (laughs)

I recently watched Jungle Fever again and thought "Damn, he is such a good actor." There is no mistake why he became a huge star.

The Big Bad Wolf: Do you keep in touch with any of the cast members?

Eric Edwards: No. I was kind of so alone in my scene. I wish I would have. It was just me and the two puppeteers.

The Big Bad Wolf: Did you get to keep anything from the set?

Eric Edwards: Its interesting. I had my original headcast for the Pearl suit and I gave it to a friend and signed it. He has been directing my one man show so I gave it as a gift to him. They gave us this little knife from blade as well.

That was such a really cool experience. My only regret is that I wish I picked a part where I was more recognizable. I was in a great movie.

The Big Bad Wolf: Did you think that Blade would be such an impactful film? It pretty much kicked off all the Marvel movies, had two sequels, a tv show, and even inspired other movies, like The Matrix.

Eric Edwards: Thank God! I am very fortunate because Blade fans are so cool! I never had a weird experience with anyone who contacted me from Blade.

I really wish the series kept going.

I am really into martial arts that is one of the reasons I love the Blade series. I have been studying stick fighting, Filipino Kali, since 1998.

The Big Bad Wolf: I know you weren't in the scene, but were you on set for the blodbath?

Eric Edwards: No. It was so epic! I would have love to been in it.

I learned so much about acting from the Blade table read. I was actually just starting to teach acting at my school with Jeff Goldbloom. In the reading, I saw Wesley Sinpes and Stephen Dorff cutting lines they thought weren't necessary. I thought it was kind of cool.

They both approached it as a team. Let's make a great project. At the wrap party I saw Stephen Dorff and Wesley Snipes share this moment of appreciation for creating a cool movie.

When I saw the opening scene I was stunned. That was a very culturally driven extras. It was a real representation of a big city.

My buddy, Chirs Hardwick, he was the host of Singled Out and was in House of 1000 Corpses. He is so bright and funny. His favorite movie is Blade.

Hopefully I will be in a few more great movies. (laughs)

The Big Bad Wolf: What are you working on today?

Eric Edwards: I just wrapped a film I have been producing called, Dead in Love. He has done a lot of stuff for Troma. It is about two people that are dead that try to track down a girl they are in love with.

I directed a short I am going to put on YouTube. It is in the vain of "The Landlord". It is pretty funny, hopefully it will catch on.

I have a few commercials I am running as well.

I also have my one man show, "Just Step". I lost 210 pounds.

The Big Bad Wolf: Thank you for your time Eric! Best of luck with everything in your future!



Dr. Karen Jenson: What's that smell?
Pearl: [Distantly]...image carefully, Frost. You will need 12 purebloods to make the ritual work. [Realizes that someone is in the room] Kreiger, is that you? [Blade reveals himself] He's here! He's here!
Blade: This must be Pearl, the record keeper.
[Pearl lets out a rather disgusting fart]
Pearl: He's going to kill me! You need me, Frost! You need me!
Frost: Pearl, you're history. Have the good grace to die with some fucking dignity.
Pearl: Frost. [Blade turns the laptop Frost is communicating through so that it's facing him] Ruthless bloodsucker.
Frost: Congratulations, Blade.
Blade: Frost.
Frost: I hear you've been looking for me. I'm flattered.
Blade: It'll pass.
[Frost turns off the laptop]
Frost: Fuck.
Pearl: [After Dr. Jenson takes out a flashlight] What is that?
Blade: That, biscuit boy, is a UV lamp. We're gonna play a little game of 20 questions.
Pearl: Noooo.
Blade: Depending on how you answer, you may walk outta here with a tan. [Points to a computer screen] What's that?
Pearl: That? Oh, it's nothing. It's routine research. [Laughs nervously] Actually it's a video game.
[Blade snaps his fingers; Dr. Jenson momentarily shines the UV light on Pearl, who screams and smoke rises off his body]
Blade: That must'a hurt.
Pearl: It's a fragment! A piece of the prophecy!
Blade: What prophecy?
Pearl: Oh, I'm not really sure. There's so many of them out--
[Blade gives Jenson a look, so she turns on the light and fries Pearl again]
Pearl: [in vampire tongue] La Magra is coming! The Spirits of the Twelve... will awaken the Blood God!
[Jenson turns off the light]
Pearl: [in English] And there's nothing you can do about it, Daywalker!
Blade: Is that so?
Pearl: Well, that's what Frost says.
Blade: Then you won't mind me borrowing this for awhile, will you? [Takes a disk from the computer and turns to Jenson] If he moves, fry him. [Walks to an armored door] What's in here?
Pearl: Nothing! It's a storeroom. But you're wasting your time. There's nothing of importance to anyone.
Blade: [Spray explosive gel around the door] Then you won't mind if I take a peek.
Pearl: NO!!
[Dr. Jenson fries Pearl almost immediately; A look from Blade stops her]
Dr. Karen Jenson: He moved.

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