American Gods won’t air on Starz until 2017, but the series is already drawing a lot of attention. Showrunners and writers Bryan Fuller and Michael Green, director and executive producer David Slade, and author and executive producer Neil Gaiman joined cast members Ricky Whittle (Shadow Moon), Ian McShane (Mr. Wednesday), Pablo Schreiber (Mad Sweeney), Yetide Badaki (Bilquis), and Bruce Langley (Technical Boy) for an appearance at San Diego Comic-Con to provide some intel on the upcoming series. The American Gods panel included the release of a teaser trailer, news on Kristin Chenoweth’s casting as the goddess Easter, and much more.
After the American Gods panel at SDCC 2016, here’s why we’re more ready to worship than ever.
The trailer is everything. For me personally, watching the American Gods trailer released at SDCC was like seeing some of the book’s scenes playing out on screen, exactly as they’d appeared in my imagination while reading the book. Judging by the response in the panel room, I’m thinking plenty of other people felt the same way. If you haven’t had a chance yet, check it out here:
The casting keeps getting better and better. Ricky Whittle as Shadow Moon, Ian McShane as Mr. Wednesday, Gillian Anderson as Media, Pablo Schreiber as Mad Sweeney, Bruce Langley as Technical Boy…These names (and more) had already been released to public before the American Gods panel at San Diego Comic-Con; and the crowd in Room 6BCF was already prepared to bow down to every single cast member, whether present or not.
But then Kristin Chenoweth was announced as the goddess Easter, adding yet another big name, perfectly suited to her character, to the list. Add the announcement to Chenoweth’s surprise appearance at Comic-Con, and that’s just one more way that American Gods has answered prayers we didn’t even know we’d made.
Don’t expect any traditional Hollywood whitewashing, either. Neil Gaiman mentioned being very impressed with the showrunners’ dedication to keeping the racial makeup of the American Gods characters true to their origins. Bryan Fuller responded, saying they didn’t need any praise for that decision, as it should “be the baseline for adaptations.”
Thanks to that kind of thinking, we are truly blessed.
Perhaps most importantly, the creative team seems determined to do the source material justice. Taking anything from the page to the screen can be difficult at best; and more often than not, the whole thing goes awry when something key to the original text gets cut. With American Gods, that doesn’t look like it’s going to be the case.
Will the Starz series be a word-for-word duplicate of Neil Gaiman’s novel? No — that wouldn’t make for a very long-running series — but the changes that Bryan Fuller and Michael Green have made are meant to expand the universe, not take anything away. Case in point: During the SDCC American Gods panel, when a fan asked about the “Coming to America” interludes from the book, the show’s creators said they loved those parts, too, and will “use them as trampolines for bigger stories.”
Those “bigger stories” aren’t being added to American Gods in place of anything else, though. Fans were assured at Comic-Con that anything they loved in the book would also make an appearance on the show. Take, for example, Media’s first appearance in American Gods. Ever since Gillian Anderson’s casting was announced, fans have ben speculating on whether or not she’d be playing that scene; and at both the SDCC panel and a Nerdist Camp Conival appearance earlier in the day, it was confirmed that it definitely will be happening.
— American Gods (@AmericanGodsSTZ) July 22, 2016
“The idea of this show is that everybody worships something.” So, let’s worship with American Gods on STARZ, coming in 2017.
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