Finally reaching the screen, Neil Gaiman looks back and thanks the author of “Game of Thrones” George R. R. Martin for “The Sandman”. Gaiman’s comic book series, launched by DC Comics in 1989, revolved around Morpheus, also known as the Dream, one of the seven Infinite Beings and ruler of the Kingdom of Dreams. Captured during an occult ritual and held captive for a century, Morpheus escapes and goes in search of his power totems to rebuild his kingdom after it collapsed in his absence.
Gaiman has spent years working to ensure that any adaptation of “The Sandman” stays true to its source material, shutting down various film treatments and a series presentation from “Boys” showrunner Eric Kripke. Gaiman eventually partnered with David S. Goyer of “The Dark Knight” and Allan Heinberg of “Wonder Woman” to develop a television series on Netflix, mostly borrowing stories from the collections “Preludes and Nocturnes” and “Dollhouse” for the first season. After three years of development and filming, “The Sandman” premiered on Netflix last weekend, and the man behind the fantasy world shares his love for one major player who helped him get off the ground.
Related: The Sandman’s Endless Dream: Everything You Need to Know about Morpheus
In a recent interview between them hosted by Netflix Tudum, Neil Gaiman reflected on the creation of The Sandman with George R. R. Martin. The creator of the comics and the show recalled his initial unsuccessful attempt to offer the author of “Game of Thrones” a story for his “Wild Cards” franchise and how Martin’s refusal eventually led him on the path to creating “The Sandman.” See what Gaiman said below:
“I explained to Gwendolyn the other day when we were walking around the car, I said, ‘Of course, George never let me forget that I owe him the Sandman.’
Interestingly, the critically acclaimed “Sandman” series on Netflix is not the only major project based on the popular comic book franchise that Martin rejected. While the Sandman languished in development hell for decades, Fox successfully launched an adaptation Lucifer from Earth, which was based on Gaiman’s comic version of the Ruler of Hell, which hit Netflix after being canceled by the network after three seasons and recently came to the end of season 6. Gaiman will bring back a more faithful comic book version of Gwendoline Christie’s Lucifer character in The Sandman, who also received recognition along with the rest of the ensemble cast.
George R. R. Martin of “Game of Thrones” previously confirmed that he rejected Gaiman’s offer for his “Wild Cards” franchise, which eventually turned into “Sandman,” eventually citing his concerns that at the time of his submission in 1987, Gaiman did not have serious writing credits to his name. At that time, Gaiman wrote only a biography of the English new wave band Duran Duran, a book of quotes from science fiction and fantasy, and “Don’t Panic: The Official Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Companion Galaxy.” Although it may have been a blow to Gaiman’s career at the time Martin declined his offer, it ultimately paid off for the creator, as he not only created The Sandman, whose series is now streaming on Netflix, but also wrote many fan-favorite novels, including “Good Omens”. “Coraline” and “American Gods”.