Unsurprisingly, Netflix‘s long-awaited Sandman show is not currently in production. Like most of the TV and movie industry, it’s on hiatus due to the coronavirus. However, Sandman co-creator Neil Gaiman did just offer a rare positive update on the adaptation’s progress: Apparently Sandman is much further along than fans thought.
The various Sandman adaptations are infamous for getting stuck in development hell, as Hollywood grapples with how to adapt DC Comics’ epic 12-volume comic series with complex mythology and a massive ensemble cast. Attempts at making a film did not go well, but it looks like a TV show is finally happening thanks to the recent trend for big-budget sci-fi/fantasy dramas for adults. Netflix announced plans for the live-action Sandman series last summer, and according to Gaiman, they were partway through preproduction when the pandemic hit.
Responding to a question on Tumblr, Gaiman said the show is “going really well,” but is currently in hibernation mode. The scripts for season 1 are written (although they’re now taking the extra time to polish them), the directors are hired, the sets were already being built, and casting was underway when the show was forced to take a break.
Gaiman says the show will “move smoothly back into being made” once the TV industry is in a better position to start working again.
None of the show’s directors have been announced, but we do know that Netflix’s Sandman showrunner is Wonder Woman screenwriter Allan Heinberg, with Gaiman and longtime DC movie writer/producer David Goyer as the exec producers. It’s reportedly the most expensive DC Comics TV series ever made, with season 1 expected to run for 11 episodes.