While an adaptation of The Sandman, Neil Gaiman‘s popular Vertigo comic book series, has been through many stages of development over the years, it seems now that a big-screen version will finally happen, with Joseph Gordon-Levitt and David S. Goyer producing for Warner Brothers and Gaiman being involved in the process.
But who will play the title character, Dream aka Morpheus aka the Lord of Dreams, one of The Endless?
Plenty of names have been thrown around over the years for actors to play Morpheus, such as Johnny Depp, Lee Pace, and even Gordon-Levitt, but there are two actors who consistently come up every time this casting is mentioned — Benedict Cumberbatch and Tom Hiddleston. And these two would be Gaiman’s choice, too.
Gaiman recently spoke with Radio Times where he reiterated his preferences, stating that when he first saw Cumberbatch star in BBC’s Sherlock, he thought he was “incredibly Morpheus.” But now Cumberbatch is signed on to star in the title role of Marvel’s Doctor Strange, he might not have the time or the inclination for another comic book role.
But what about Hiddleston — another Marvel actor (Loki in the Marvel Cinematic Universe)?
“Then again, Tom Hiddleston is still out there! And the truth is, as far as I’m concerned, anybody who sounds English with great cheekbones can probably pull it off.”
Ok, British and cheekbones, check! But that would mean that Gordon-Levitt doesn’t qualify for the lead, which has been rumored (it’s also rumored that he might end up directing the film).
Jack Thorne is the screenwriter for The Sandman film and Gaiman says a script has been written, but he’s still waiting on read it.
“Every now and then, I’ll come in and last time I was in was earlier this year spending a day in a hotel room with Joe, and going over everything and answering questions with him and so on and so forth. So they’ve written a script. I got a phone call about two, three weeks ago from Joe and David saying, ‘Jack did a script, we read it, we want some things done to it. We want you to see it, but not this version. The next version will be in three weeks and then you’ll be the first person to see it.’ So I am now a week before seeing the script. It’s going to come in just before Christmas. I’m nervous, I’m on tenterhooks. But do I have good feelings? Yeah I do.”
Gaiman also mentioned how difficult it’s been to get a good Sandman project going over the years — he’d rather “see rather see no Sandman movie than a bad Sandman movie” — but this time around he has more involvement and is confident in the producing team.
“They’re a good team. And with Joseph Gordon-Levitt in charge, his instincts are good and he loves the material. He wants it to be true to the material.”
Earlier this month, Goyer told Deadline that Gaiman is a “vital” part of the production:
â€œI hesitate to definitively say when it might go before the cameras, but the one thing different between other iterations and ours is that Neil Gaiman has been in the room with us and is a vital part of the team,â€ Goyer said. â€œWe have a draft Warners is very happy with and weâ€™re moving forward, knock on wood.â€
In case it isn’t obvious, having Gaiman executive producing this film means everything. It also means that when the script inevitably deviates from the comic book, it will likely be sanctioned by Gaiman, so we as fans will have to not stroke out over it.