The show I am most excited to see this year is The Sandman. I was introduced to it by a friend twenty-five years ago. The Sandman is a hot topic right now, and it is very fitting that it had a panel at SDCC this year. I would have given a lot to be at the panel and have the opportunity to ask Neil Gaiman a question.
Present at the panel was Neil Gaiman, Allan Heinberg, Tom Sturridge (Dream), Gwendoline Christie (Lucifer), Boyd Holbrook (The Corinthian), Mason Alexander-Park (Desire), Jenna Coleman (Johanna Constantine), Patton Oswalt (Matthew the Raven), Kirby Howell-Baptiste (Death), Kyo Ra (Rose), and Vivienne Acheampong (Lucienne). Obviously, that isn’t the complete cast, but that is a decent chunk. They spoke a bit about the casting for the roles. With Tom/Dream, it was love at first sight, but they auditioned, I think, one thousand people for Dream’s role, only to keep coming back to Tom. Neil spoke about the casting for Lucifer’s actress. Neil spoke at first of having sent inspiration pictures for the look of Lucifer for the original comic and remembered it as a young David Bowie with permed hair. Neil liked the look of androgyny, which Gwendoline pulls off very well, in my opinion. Look at her as Brienne of Tarth in GoT. Neil said of Gwendoline that she is a “junky angel in spades,” and Gwendoline seemed to love that. Mason, Tom, and Kirby played the Endless siblings Desire, Dream, and Death, respectively. Mason says they felt the ultimate sibling rivalry going on within the scene they were in together.
I love that Neil described us fans of the Sandman comics, yogurt starters. He went on to say that it is us yogurt starters that he made Sandman. We will sit there and be judgy, but if he gets it right, we will tell Everybody about the show. We have to go convert the world. The art of the comic is gorgeous, and when asked about staying true to the artists, it was pointed out that the people who are putting the show together are artists too and that they are trying to honor everyone. Though, Dave McKeen, the artist who did the cover art for Sandman for thirty years, who was in retirement, did new art for Sandman for the show. There is new art from this artist at the end of each episode.
One question about staying true to the vision he had when he was writing Sandman and staying true to the person he has become at the same time was an interesting one to think about as a writer myself. Neil’s answer, he had to relearn to trust the 26, 27, and 28-year-old person he was. The second to last question was, “Will we see a 1602 movie?” and Neil responded that it is up to Marvel. It seems that Neil had brought it up eight years ago and was told it would never happen. However, the people who said that are gone, and new people are in. The last question was for Patton, and they wanted to know if he had ever eaten ratatouille before in reference to his playing Remy in the movie Ratatouille. It turns out he has.
Don’t forget The Sandman premiers on Netflix on August 5th, 2022. So be sure to check it out! I will be!