Back in March, Joseph Gordon-Levitt left the film adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s “The Sandman,” citing creative differences with New Line. It was then announced that Eric Heisserer would take over screenwriting duties after writer Jack Thorne also left the project. Though now eight months later, Heisserer has also decided to part with the adaptation.
The screenwriter made the announcement during an interview with io9 where he stated that “Sandman” would be better off as a TV series.
“I had many conversations with Neil on this, and I did a lot of work on the feature and 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 Arrival” writer explained. “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. So I talked myself out of a job!”
Created in 1989, “The Sandman” is a DC/Vertigo creation that tells the story of Dream of the Endless, also known as Morpheus, who rules the world of dreams and his siblings. In the comics, he is captured and subsequently learns that sometimes change is inevitable.
It could be that the problem with moving forward with the adaptation is that the narrative is too long and complex, thus not translating well in a two-hour film. Gordon-Levitt, who was in line to star and direct the feature, had also mentioned that he and New Line didn’t “see eye to eye on what makes ‘Sandman’ special and what a film adaptation could/should be.”
While “The Sandman’s” fate is unknown, Gaiman’s “American Gods” adaptation is still in the works and set to premiere next year on Starz.