Netflix is ready to show you fear in a handful of dust. On Monday the streaming platform announced that it has officially given a series order to The Sandman, an adaptation of the iconic 1990s comic series by Neil Gaiman and a host of the genre’s best artists.
This is not the first time a Sandman adaptation has been floated, of course. Long-time fans surely remember back in 2013 when Joseph Gordon-Levitt was attached to star in a film version from New Line. That project fizzled out a few years later, and it felt like The Sandman might never make it to the screen. But this Netflix version already boasts a few key differences from past attempts. First of all, it’s a TV series (10 episodes total) rather than a movie, which might be a better fit for the comic’s characteristically disparate storytelling. Although Morpheus, the king of dreams, is the protagonists of The Sandman, there are dozens of other colorful characters who share the spotlight; some of the best issues of the comic series barely feature Morpheus at all.
Then there’s the direct involvement of Gaiman himself. Fresh off his experience as showrunner of Amazon Prime’s Good Omens (an adaptation of his novel with Terry Pratchett), Gaiman will be both a writer and executive producer on Netflix’s The Sandman. He will share those titles with The Dark Knight screenwriter David S. Goyer, who was also attached to the Gordon-Levitt film. Wonder Woman screenwriter Allan Heinberg will be the official showrunner. Luckily for fans, Heinberg is intimately familiar both with comics (he co-created Marvel’s Young Avengers with artist Jim Cheung in 2005) and with TV (he was a writer on Grey’s Anatomy, The O.C., Gilmore Girls, and more).
Gaiman, Goyer, and Heinberg will co-write the first episode of the series.
“We’re thrilled to partner with the brilliant team that is Neil Gaiman, David S. Goyer and Allan Heinberg to finally bring Neil’s iconic comic book series, The Sandman, to life onscreen,” said Channing Dungey, VP of original programming at Netflix, said in a statement. “From its rich characters and storylines to its intricately built-out worlds, we’re excited to create an epic original series that dives deep into this multi-layered universe beloved by fans around the world.”
Get ready to dream a little dream, Netflix viewers. Soon you’ll be able to better understand the references to The Sandman in other Netflix shows like Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.