Neil Gaiman talked with Radio Times this week about the latest incarnation of the perpetually in development Sandman movie. The comics have been optioned so many times over the years, that Gaiman’s been able (been forced to?) spend a few decades DREAMcasting (not sorry) his characters.
It’s a funny thing with Morpheus. Again, it’s that thing where you look around and think, ‘Yes this person would be a fantastic person’, and then time passes. There was a time Johnny Depp would’ve been a great Morpheus, but now he’s too old and it’s fine. I think the first time I saw Benedict was as Sherlock Holmes, I thought, ‘wow, that’s incredibly Morpheus’. And fans probably thought the same because they immediately started doing fan-art, meshing the two of them up.
Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), Cumberbatch is locked into playing Doctor Strange, so he’s off the table for other comics roles at the moment.
Then again, Tom Hiddleston is still out there! And the truth is, as far as I’m concerned, anybody who sounds English with great cheekbones can probably pull it off.
So I think we can safely assume Neil Gaiman saw Only Lovers Left Alive, right?
And of course he’s right. Tom Hiddleston would KILL as Dream, and not just visually. But should he? A Sandman movie is one of those things that would be amazing in theory. But those books are perfection. What are the realistic chances that we’d get a film that lived up to our existing love? Neil knows what we mean, though, and he agrees.
I really am [glad to have more input]. My position on it has always been, for over 25 years now, I would rather see no Sandman movie than a bad Sandman movie. A couple of times, people say, ‘It’s a crime there’s never been a Sandman movie’, and a couple of times, to be honest, I have thrown my body in front of a bus on a couple of bad ones over the years. I’m just happy that no bad Sandman movie has ever been made. But I’m really hoping that a good one will be.So good, Gaiman is more involved than he had been with previous passes. But what about the rest of the team? The script is being co-written by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who we all know is an unusually creative guy and can rock the shit out of a three piece suit (it’s an important qualification for anything!), and he DID write Don Jon, which I maybe loved more than most. But what about the rest of the group? Well, we’ve got David S. Goyer, of Man of Steel boredom and the Constantine TV show, and Jack Thorne, who wrote the screenplay for that atrocious Long Way Down adaptation earlier this year. But Gaiman is confident, and that has to mean something, right?
They’re a good team. And with Joseph Gordon-Levitt in charge, his instincts are good and he loves the material. He wants it to be true to the material.And things seem to be moving along quickly.
Every now and then, I’ll come in and last time I was in was earlier this year spending a day in a hotel room with Joe, and going over everything and answering questions with him and so on and so forth. So they’ve written a script. I got a phone call about two, three weeks ago from Joe and David saying, ‘Jack did a script, we read it, we want some things done to it. We want you to see it, but not this version. The next version will be in three weeks and then you’ll be the first person to see it.’ So I am now a week before seeing the script. It’s going to come in just before Christmas. I’m nervous, I’m on tenterhooks. But do I have good feelings? Yeah I do.Okay, fine. I will remain cautiously optimistic. For Neil.