Friends, the other day some rather exciting news was announced on Twitter that slipped under my radar – thankfully I came across Charles Pulliam-Moore’s Io9 article this morning. An official announcement on Twitter by Neil Gaiman (American Gods, Coraline), revealing that not only has Audible and DC Comics joined up to produce adaptations of the writer’s groundbreaking comic book series The Sandman – but that James McAvoy (X-Men: First Class, Split) is voicing the role of Lord Morpheus of the Dreaming.
The first issue of The Sandman was published back on November 29th of 1988, lasting 75 issues, with the final issue of the original series being released in March of ’96. While becoming a flagship title for the DC Comics Vertigo line starting with issue 47 – Neil Gaiman along with the likes of Sam Keith (The Maxx) as well as Mike Dringenberg (Doom Patrol) and a legion of other artists introduced the World to Morpheus and his dysfunctional Family members that make up the Endless. Besides the Lord of Dreams, the most popular member of the Endless would have to be none other than Death – voiced by Kat Dennings in the Audible adaptation – with her Goth-like attire and surprisingly warm and gentle nature, it is easy to see why fans embraced the character so quickly.
While I can proudly say that I was there at the beginning of James Robinson’s Starman – the truth of the matter is I was a little late to the game with The Sandman. It wasn’t until after I had graduate High School and one of my best friends lent me the first few collections of the series that I added The Sandman to my pull list at the local comic shop.
Now back to the subject of the article, as I understand it from the announcement made by Neil Gaiman, you can pre-order it at Audible right this minute – with the first chapter of the adaptation going live on July 15th. Here is a statement from the official press release:
“When The Sandman, also known as Lord Morpheus – the immortal king of dreams, stories and the imagination – is pulled from his realm and imprisoned on Earth by a nefarious cult, he languishes for decades before finally escaping. Once free, he must retrieve the three “tools” that will restore his power and help him to rebuild his dominion, which has deteriorated in his absence. As the multi-threaded story unspools, The Sandman descends into Hell to confront Lucifer (Michael Sheen), chases rogue nightmares who have escaped his realm, and crosses paths with an array of characters from DC comic books, ancient myths, and real-world history, including: Inmates of Gotham City’s Arkham Asylum, Doctor Destiny, the muse Calliope, the three Fates, William Shakespeare (Arthur Darvill), and many more.
A powerhouse supporting cast helps translate this masterwork into a sonic experience worthy of its legacy, including Riz Ahmed, Kat Dennings, Taron Egerton, Samantha Morton, Bebe Neuwirth, Andy Serkis, and more. Setting the stage for their performance is an unprecedented cinematic soundscape featuring an original musical score by British Academy Award winner James Hannigan. Fans will especially revel in a new twist for the audio adaptation: Neil Gaiman himself serves as the narrator. Follow him as he leads listeners along a twisting path of myths, imagination and, often, terror. Even in your wildest dreams, you’ve never heard anything like this.”