Friday, September 27, 2013

NBC Adapting DC Comics' CONSTANTINE for TV

At this rate, we're going to need a separate Comic Book Channel on cable.

Two days after announcing that Fox has ordered the Batman prequel Gotham straight to series for 2014-15, Deadline reports that NBC is adapting DC Comics' Constantine for television.  The project, written and executive produced by The Mentalist executive producer Daniel Cerone and Man of Steel screenwriter David S. Goyer, was sold to NBC for a script plus penalty.  Constantine is described in the article as "an enigmatic and irreverent conman turned reluctant supernatural detective, who is thrust into the role of defending the human race against dark forces from beyond."

The character of John Constantine first appeared in The Saga of the Swamp Thing #37 in 1985 and was created by Alan Moore, Steve Bissette and John Totleben.  Based physically on the musician Sting, Constantine proved popular enough in 1988 to be spun off into his own VERTIGO series Hellblazer, which ran for an impressive 300 issues until earlier this year.  The replacement series Constantine immediately followed, after Constantine was brought back to the relaunched DC Universe as part of "The New 52" to lead the supernatural team Justice League Dark.

This will be the second time John Constantine has been portrayed in live action, after the 2005 film Constantine that starred Keanu Reeves as an Americanized version of the character.  With some elements taken from the Garth Ennis Hellblazer story "Dangerous Habits," the film also starred Rachel Weisz, Shia LaBeouf, Tilda Swinton and Djimon Hounsou.

Constantine is also slated to appear in a Justice League Dark movie by Hellboy and Pacific Rim director Guillermo del Toro.  The project is still in development, with del Toro giving an update to Collider in July, saying "Justice League Dark is very active.  I’m doing one more revision while we wait for the writer.  It’s somebody big, [and] we’re patiently waiting for that writer.  I think it’s worth it, I think it’s a guy we all admire.  I’m doing my revisions on my sort of Bible, on my story for the film.  I can tell you it’s the writing project I’ve enjoyed the most in English.  Devil’s Backbone and Pan’s Labyrinth are in Spanish, but of all my writing and screenplays, this was so much fun because it was character.  It was a pretty easy plot, but the character interaction, Swamp Thing with Deadman and The Demon, it’s so joyful for me to write that.  Constantine is such a great character, so dry.  I think it could be a great movie.  I don’t want to do many changes until the proper writer comes onboard."

1 comment:

  1. Sting played a very creepy, nasty dude in the 80s film "Brimstone & Treacle", and that character inspired Constantine, at least visually. Funny how pop culture disassembles and synthesizes.