At long last, Neil Gaiman’s seminal American Gods has completed its lengthy journey to the small screen. Starz has given a straight-to-series order for a drama adaptation of the award-winning contemporary fantasy novel, considered to be one of the most influential works of fiction this century in its genre.
Hannibal creator Bryan Fuller and Kings creator Michael Green developed and wrote the adaptation, which Green will also executive-produce and showrun. Gaiman is attached as an executive producer, ensuring fans of his novel that this take, from FreeMantle Media North America, will be a faithful adaptation.
Now that American Gods has a home, attention turns to casting for the ambitious series. First up: Fuller, Green, Gaiman and Starz will look to cast the role of Shadow Moon.
The 2001 novel centers on an epic war between old gods, born out of people’s spiritual and religious beliefs, and new gods, a consequence of society’s obsessions with media, celebrity, technology, drugs and other modern vices. Both the new and old gods exist as a result of people believing in them, but the old gods’ powers are waning as the new ones’ grow, leading to an all-out war. Shadow Moon, a human ex-con, becomes the bodyguard of the mysterious Mr. Wednesday (one of the old gods in disguise) and sets out across America to help Wednesday assemble the old gods for a final stand.
Starz CEO Chris Albrecht said:
“With our partners at FremantleMedia and with Bryan, Michael and Neil guiding the project, we hope to create a series that honors the book and does right by the fans, who have been casting it in their minds for years. The search for Shadow begins today!”
For his part, Gaiman said:
“I am thrilled, scared, delighted, nervous and a ball of glorious anticipation. The team that is going to bring the world of American Gods to the screen has been assembled like the master criminals in a caper movie: I’m relieved and confident that my baby is in good hands. Now we finally move to the exciting business that fans have been doing for the last dozen years: casting our Shadow, our Wednesday, our Laura…”
Starz previously adapted popular book series Outlander into a series, so it has some experience tackling beloved works. We’ll keep you posted as a cast is put together for American Gods.