Neil Gaiman Penning Multiple Episodes Of ‘American Gods’
Fans of Neil Gaiman’s Hugo and Nebula Award-winning fantasy novel American Gods were no doubt already delighted that it’s finally being turned into a television series, set to air on Starz. But they might be even happier by the news that the author himself will be writing a few episodes. Producer Bryan Fuller revealed Gaiman’s contributions while speaking to Collider. “We are cranking away” at scripts for the first two episodes he said, then added “Neil Gaiman is going to be writing episodes of the show.”
Gaiman joins an illustrious roster of authors who have written episodes of TV shows adapted from their works. A Song of Ice and Fire author George R. R. Martin has himself penned several episodes of HBO’s Game of Thrones, as has Stephen King for Under the Dome.
The 2001 novel concerns a brewing war between old and new gods, with traditional gods from myth and religions steadily losing believers to deities that reflect more modern concerns, such as love of money, technology, media, celebrity and drugs. The book centers on Shadow Moon, an ex-con hired as a bodyguard by one of those older gods trying to push back against the new gods’ successes. American Gods was given a straight-to-series order by Starz, and is currently casting Shadow Moon. Hannibal showrunner Bryan Fuller and Kings creator Michael Green co-created the series. They’ll share executive production duties with Gaiman.
Gillian Anderson has joined Starz’s adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods,” Variety has learned.
Anderson will play Media, the mouthpiece for the New Gods, functioning as their public face and sales representative, by taking the form of various iconic celebrities. She lives off the attention and worship that people give to screens — to their laptops, their TVs, to their iPhones in their hands while they watch their TVs. Ever the perky spokesperson, and always in control, she spins stories in whatever direction best suits her.
The casting marks a reunion between Anderson and “American Gods” executive producer Bryan Fuller — the two previously collaborated on NBC’s “Hannibal.”
In addition to “Hannibal,” Anderson recently returned to her iconic role as Dana Scully in Fox’s revival of “The X-Files,” which premiered in January, and will next be seen in the third and final season of crime thriller “The Fall,” which will air later this year.
“American Gods” is produced by FremantleMedia North America. Fuller and Michael Green are writers and showrunners. David Slade is directing the pilot and additional episodes. FMNA’s Craig Cegielski and Stefanie Berk are executive producing the series along with Fuller, Green, Slade and Gaiman. Senior Vice Presidents of Original Programming Marta Fernandez and Ken Segna are the Starz executives in charge of “American Gods.” Starz retains all network pay TV and SVOD rights to the project, and FremantleMedia is distributing the series worldwide.
The plot of “American Gods” posits a war brewing between old and new gods: the traditional gods of mythological roots from around the world steadily losing believers to an upstart pantheon of gods reflecting society’s modern love of money, technology, media, celebrity and drugs. Its protagonist, Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle), is an ex-con who becomes bodyguard and traveling partner to Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane), a conman with personal ties to the battle between the deities.