On the heels of DC Comics announcing that it was ending its prestigious Vertigo imprint, the influence of that brand continues to be felt, as Netflix has optioned the rights to Neil Gaiman‘s era-defining series ‘Sandman’ to be turned into a streaming series, with “a massive financial commitment and DC Entertainment’s most-expensive TV foray ever.”
This news also comes on the heels of the cancellation of ‘Swamp Thing’, another live-action series based on a Vertigo comic that was axed by the DC Universe streaming service, after “creative differences.” Only one episode of ‘Swamp Thing’ was released before the cancellation was announced.
‘Sandman’ was ordered straight-to-series. Allan Heinberg (‘Grey’s Anatomy’) will write and serve as showrunner. Gaiman will serve as an executive producer alongside David S. Goyer (‘Krypton’). Gaiman recently adapted his book ‘Good Omens’ into live-action for Amazon, while his other book ‘American Gods’ is a hit for STARZ. Gaiman served as showrunner for ‘Good Omens’, a role he has vowed to never take on for another adaptation of his work.
Previously, Warner Brothers had plans to turn ‘Sandman’ into a movie, with Joseph Gordon-Levitt attached to star and direct, starting in 2013, but by 2016, Gordon-Levitt had departed the project over “creative differences.”
Screenwriter Eric Heisserer also departed the project in 2016, after he realized that the series did not lend itself to a film format. At the time, he stated:
“I … came to the conclusion that the best version of this property exists as an HBO series or limited series, not as a feature film, not even as a trilogy. The structure of the feature film really doesn’t mesh with this. So I went back and said here’s the work that I’ve done. This isn’t where it should be. It needs to go to TV.”
Warner Brothers chose to farm ‘Sandman’ to a third party rather than reserve it for its own upcoming WarnerMedia streaming service, because of the hefty price tag, and the desire for a cash influx from such a deal, which would help mitigate its recent big-ticket pact with J.J. Abrams.
Can you believe ‘Sandman’ is finally getting a live-action adaptation? How do you feel about it going to Netflix?
Source: The Hollywood Reporter