During the “Sandman Universe” panel at today’s DC FanDome streaming event, Sandman comics creator Neil Gaiman took a moment to update fans on the upcoming television adaptation of the iconic comic book series that is being created for streaming service Netflix.
Gaiman acknowledged that, like much of everything else, pre-production on the Sandman television series has had a giant pause button pushed due to the coronavirus epidemic, but that time was spent on further polishing the scripts for the show.
“Now that the universal pause button has been lifted, I am getting emails with designs of things I have only ever seen in the comics that have been rendered in 3D and I am being asked to comment on it,” Gaiman stated.
He also explained that the show was making one major change from the original comics run and the recent audio book version released through Audible that would affect how the Netflix adaptation’s story would play out.
Part of the joy of doing the audio adaptation was going “This is going to be the nearest thing we can do to an audio book of those first three graphic novels, and hopefully all of the graphic novels. And we’re going to start it in 1988 and it’s going to end in 1991 or `92.” Sandman is a very compressed story, even though it takes place all through time and space.
What we’re doing with Netflix is saying “OK, it’s still going to start in 1916, but the thing that happens in Sandman #1, the point where the story starts, is not 1988, it’s now. And how does that change the story? What does that give us? What does that make us have to look at that we wouldn’t have to look at if we were setting it as a period piece? What is that going to do to gender of characters, to the nature of characters? What is that going to do to the story?
And that has been an absolute delight because that means we are always being true to the story and being true to the characters, but it gives us tremendous freedom to go “OK, if we were doing it now, what would Sandman be?” And that, again, is very liberating.”
As pre-production begins to slowly start back up on the project expect to hear more news in the coming months.