Neil Gaiman teases David Tennant and Michael Sheen's 'magic' chemistry in Good Omens
The author visits EW's Comic-Con studio to break down his upcoming Amazon series (and confirm that yes, the show will feature plenty of Queen).
According to Neil Gaiman, David Tennant and Michael Sheen are positively divine.
The pair star in the upcoming Amazon TV series Good Omens, based on the beloved 1990 satire novel by Gaiman and Terry Pratchett. The story follows a whole host of quirky characters trying to navigate the end of the world — including a young Antichrist, a prescient witch, and the Four Bikers of the Apocalypse. But the real heart of Good Omens is Sheen and Tennant’s characters: a bookkeeper angel named Aziraphale and a sunglasses-sporting demon named Crowley. Together, they try to defy their demonic and angelic overlords and prevent the apocalypse.
Gaiman and director Douglas Mackinnon stopped by the EW studio at Comic-Con to tease a little bit about Tennant and Sheen’s chemistry and what to expect from the unlikely pair.
“I gave them good lines and Terry gave them good lines, but they brought the magic,” Gaiman said. “And it is that chocolate and peanut butter thing, where they taste good individually, but you put them together, and now you’ve got something special.”
“Putting them together is like Scotland’s favorite actor and Wales’ favorite actor together on screen for the first time,” Mackinnon added. “And they were magical from the read through forward. At the read-through, you could actually see them becoming a team. It’s just there on the screen. It’s a thing that you can’t really specify why it works, but it just works.”
Gaiman has had his work adapted dozens of times before, but Good Omens marks the first time that he himself is taking the reins and serving as showrunner. His biggest goal in making the show, he says, was staying true to his late co-author Pratchett — who died in 2015 — and making a show that he would’ve enjoyed.
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“There’s a scene in the book where a witch named Agnes Nutter gets burned,” Gaiman explained. “That scene was pure Terry. It was one of the things he brought to the book. I wrote it in the script, and when there were discussions about making it cheaper or cutting it out, I had to explain to our producers that no, this was Terry’s scene.”
The show will cut some aspects of the book and add others, and a few characters will even see their roles expanded — like Jon Hamm as the “appalling angel” Gabriel. But some of the most beloved parts of the book are staying the same: Gaiman and Mackinnon confirmed that yes, the show will include a Queen-heavy soundtrack.
“You could not do Good Omens without Queen, and I think that is the fairest possible answer,” Gaiman said. “How much Queen we’re going to get and whether we get all of the Queen that we want… we will find out.”
Good Omens airs on Amazon in 2019. For more, read EW’s Comic-Con preview issue here.