Sandman Movie Producer Hopes to Start Filming in 2016

"It's a really complicated adaptation."

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While DC Comics are best known for their high-profile superheroes, there are plenty of darker, more unusual DC titles for potential film adaptations, many under the Vertigo banner. In June, parent company Warner made the decision to move the film development of Vertigo properties over to its subsidiary New Line Cinema, and now some news has emerged about the progress of one of the most popular Vertigo titles, Neil Gaiman's fantasy series Sandman.

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David Goyer is the co-producer of the adaptation, and he spoke this week to Collider about its status. "We're just about to do a new draft," he confirmed. "We're just starting a re-write with a really fantastic writer that's coming aboard, but I can't quite announce it yet.

"I think that the Vertigo properties are a bit more quirky and off-center than kind of the mainstream superhero stuff at Warners. But I understand the decision because we're not having to fight for release dates with the Vertigo stuff like we would have been having to do over at Warner Bros.

"I feel confident that film will go into production hopefully next year."

Goyer is producing with Dark Knight Rises star Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who has also been tipped to star as lead character Morpheus and possibly even direct. In June, Gordon-Levitt spoke to MTV about how he and Goyer were approaching the complex source material.

"It's a really complicated adaptation because those comics, they're brilliant. But they're not written as a whole," he said. "It's not like Watchmen, which is a graphic novel that has a beginning, middle and end. To try and take [the entire Sandman series] and make it into something that's a feature film--a movie that has a beginning, middle and end--is complicated.

"It's going to be like a grand, spectacular action film, but that relies on none of those same old ordinary cliches."

The original run of Sandman lasted for 75 issues, plus one special, between 1989 and 1996. Gaiman has returned to the title a number of times since, including a novella and a six-part prequel series. The comic has won over 26 prestigious Eisner Awards, and by the end of its run was DC's most popular title, outselling the likes Batman and Superman.

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