American Gods, an urban fantasy novel by Neil Gaiman, is getting a second chance at becoming a television series thanks to FreemantleMedia North America and Starz. The project was previously in development at HBO, but hit a snag along the way and never panned out.
The network has now given the project a script to series development order, which is a gamble, but with the pilot written by Bryan Fuller (Hannibal, Pushing Daisies, Heroes) and Michael Green (The River, Kings, Heroes), it’s definitely more of a low risk one. Both writers will stay on as showrunners, and will also take on the executive producer role along with Gaiman.
Gaiman released the following statement about the project, and it sounds like he’s certainly on board with the development of this project thus far.
“When you create something like ‘American Gods,’ which attracts fans and obsessives and people who tattoo quotes from it on themselves or each other, and who all, tattooed or not, just care about it deeply, it’s really important to pick your team carefully: you don’t want to let the fans down, or the people who care and have been casting it online since the dawn of recorded history. What I love most about the team who I trust to take it out to the world, is that they are the same kind of fanatics that ’American Gods’ has attracted since the start. I haven’t actually checked Bryan Fuller or Michael Green for quote tattoos, but I would not be surprised if they have them. The people at Fremantle are the kinds of people who have copies of ‘American Gods in the bottom of their backpacks after going around the world, and who press them on their friends. And the team at Starz have been quite certain that they wanted to give Shadow, Wednesday and Laura a home since they first heard that the book was out there.I can’t wait to see what they do to bring the story to the widest possible audience able to cope with it.”
There’s a lot of potential for a series of this nature, and Starz seems like a great spot for it. The network has had a fair share of success with period dramas that were edged with a supernatural touch i.e. Da Vinci’s Demons, so American Gods will surely be in good company.