Consider this post a continuation springing forth from Jay-Rey’s post announcing the big news that Joseph Gordon Levitt is in the home stretch of talking with Warner Brothers and it looks like he may star in and possibly direct (but as of right now is definitely signed on as Producer) for a movie adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman. We’ve been hearing these murmurings for while, and while many of us never felt this day may ever REALLY come (or want it to?) we are at the threshold of having a Sandman movie in the works. Some folks have been waiting since 1989 for Dream to come alive and it looks like this time it will finally happen.
I’m an intense fan of the Sandman series, it’s one of those stories that came into my life during a particularly relevant time, and so it resonated deeply with me and left a pretty big mark in my mind. Some story lines hit me so close while I was reading that I was wrecked for days afterwards. Like… one of those instances where you put a book down, look around dazed and slightly alarmed and realize you’ve definitely just ruined your own day. Then the next day you sit and stare into your morning cereal pondering the cosmos and mortality and why are you even eating cereal at all. I get pretty worked up over this series. So like some others out there that feel deeply for Sandman, I maybe didn’t care to cry out for a Sandman movie for fear of having another Last Airbender in my life. I mentally, emotionally, psychologically cannot handle the idea of that happening to Sandman. And it’s the risk every invested fan takes when we hear the words “movie adaptation”. No other phrase can bring such dread and such joy.
However, I’m entering into this venture cautiously optimistic. I will not raise my hopes to unrealistic expectations. I don’t even expect them to capture fully the essence of Sandman that made me fall in love with the original series (if only because I’m not sure it’s possible). I will be happy if they create a solid, visually engaging and entertaining movie. I won’t be hatin’ on a movie that hasn’t even been produced yet. And so far I’m even finding it hard to nit-pick reasons to be hatin’ in these early stages.
I am pleased that JGL is involved in this and as Jay-Rey said, he’s risen to every challenge and proved he’s capable. So I have no fears regarding him in any aspect of the film he’s involved with, in fact, I daresay I’d be absolutely ecstatic if not for the fact my brain has already set itself on the perfect actor for the role of Morpheus, the Lord of Dreams, one of The Endless… master combination of all that truly makes a dark and brooding character. (My dream casting choice is Tom Hiddleston, in case you were wondering. Take one look at him in stills for the upcoming Only Lovers Left Alive and tell me this man couldn’t be a convincing Dream – especially with Hiddleston’s demeanor and style. But I digress…) All fan-casting aside, I’m not worried about JGL if he is indeed cast as Dream. It’s JGL. I’m not worried about David Goyer either… Again, he’s a super solid pick. So solid that I’m actually a bit surprised we even have him on board and I’m ready to high-five someone over it! And his inclusion might just hint at how seriously DC is taking this project. And the most important addition to this team has been confirmed – Neil Gaiman. So far icy panic has not gripped my heart, if there had been any then Mr. Gaiman’s name would have been enough to keep it at bay.
Joseph Gordon Levit as Producer… David Goyer supervising the screenplay… and Gaiman himself as an Executive Producer – you can’t tell me that doesn’t have you a little interested or excited as to what this movie could be, regardless of if you’ve ever read Sandman or not. Having Gaiman on board for this project is a HUGE check in the plus category. This story is his child, and I doubt he’d let them punch his creation in the face until it becomes a horribly disfigured version of its former self. With his guidance we could get something good going here. He’s key to making sure the spirit of the original series stays intact.
Now that I have to find something to worry about:
Can I fret about the plot yet? Which story arcs will be covered? Just Chapter 1: Preludes & Nocturnes, as is widely speculated? How much of Sandman can you cover in a movie? If we simply stick with Preludes, does that mean we can hope for further chapters of the series to be broken up into multiple movies? Trilogies seem to be the magic number nowadays!
And like Jay-Rey said… will we see this movie crossing over into the DC Vertigo Universe to coincide with the possible Justice League Dark? Are they going to try to make this fit together?
Personally, Sandman is enough of its own universe where it doesn’t need to be hooked up with anything else in the DC Vertigo-verse. This would work beautifully as a stand-alone movie(s), a universe unto itself. BUT… do I think they’ll still try to make it happen if they can find a way? Absolutely. The success of unified movie-verse films is confirmed and has become standard fare for us now, and if they can try to make it work then you know they’ll go through with it. (Hell, they’re already putting Bats in the next Supes movie and trying to get that to possibly carry us to a Justice League film down the road.) However, if there’s one other person I’d want involved in, around, or in the same proximity as a Sandman flick it’d probably be Guillermo Del Toro (the name associated with aforementioned Justice League Dark).
So what’s everyone else’s feelings? Have you already got the torch and pitchforks ready, or have you been celebrating all day since the announcement? Cool with the idea of the JGL possibly portraying a dark and spooky Dream? Any ideas of how the story arcs could play out? For those of you who’ve never read the series – does this sound like something you’re interested in seeing? Let me hear it!