While we all know that Warner Brothers wants to make ‘The Sandman‘ movie, it is the success of the premiere episode of ‘American Gods‘ which has people wondering how a series would do instead. Honestly, fans of the comics have long pointed out that it would work better as an ongoing series instead of a single film or even a trilogy. There are too many standalone stories or arcs that just wouldn’t fit properly for a feature length film let alone work as a blockbuster or tentpole release. So, of course, Neil Gaiman and Bryan Fuller were separately asked about the idea to see how they would tackle it.
Now, it should be pointed out that there are no plans for a show and likely the studio still wants a movie so don’t get your hopes up that this could actually see the light of day.
First off, Gaiman spoke about the rights to the franchise, where they are, and how he thinks they’ll be looked at being adapted:
“If I had control over Sandman, which I do not, because I signed the deal when I was 26, and I knew what I was getting into. The trouble with Warners and I don’t blame them for it, is they know that Sandman is one of the jewels in their crown — and they know that with the jewels in your crown, you make movies out of them and they know they have Batman. ‘We know what we have in Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and Sandman… we just can’t crack Sandman.’ You can’t crack it because it’s too big!”
Too big is right as many of the problems everyone who has worked on the project has stated that it is too big to tell in a 2-hour timeslot. In fact, Eric Heisserer who was the last writer attached to the script left it because he couldn’t find a way to cut it down to a single sitting.
Gaiman’s solution is the same thing that many fans would prefer:
I suspect in a weird way, the fact that they took a tiny fragment of Sandman, and now it’s one of Fox’s biggest hits might actually convince people to do the classy TV series I’ve been suggesting they do for 15 years now. For a long time, I’ve been saying with a movie, you’ll have to throw so many things out. Why not take all the things that make [it difficult to adapt], take all the bugs in Sandman, and make them features. The fact that you have 75 issues, plus a whole bunch of stories? You have 80 episodes. That’s a goo”d thing! The fact that you have adult themes and adult things? That’s now a good thing. It will be very strange to take Sandman to TV, but I really do think it’s the most important thing we could do. And I hope if American Gods goes big? Between that and Lucifer, that could help.”
There is plenty of precedent for a comic series being adapted for television these days with ‘Preacher’ and ‘The Walking Dead’ being two standouts. On top of that, STARZ’s recently released ‘American Gods’ has been released to rave ratings and cement that Gaiman’s work is welcome in a televised medium.
And what does Fuller think about taking the character to television?
“Those comics are so filled with so much story, and so much humanity and such visual candy — try to stop us if we have half the opportunity.”
Sadly, with rights being with Warner Brothers and Fuller’s always full schedule, this seems to be more of wishful thinking. Still, one never knows what the future could bring.
Would you be happy to see ‘The Sandman come to television? Do you think they can make a movie work or will this linger on without ever being released? Share your thoughts below!
Stuart Conover is an author, blogger, and all around geek. When not busy being a father and husband he tries to spend as much time as possible immersed in comic books, science fiction, and horror! Would you like to know more? Follow him on Twitter!