The Sandman is a hit DC comic book written by Neil Gaiman that traverses time, gods, myths, and legends in such a broad spectrum that it was once deemed unproduceable. It has been an elusive project that has teased many production possibilities in the past that eventually fell through. This year, Netflix has bravely taken on the challenge of bringing this world filled with "the anthropomorphic embodiments of powerful natural forces" into our screen. Are you excited to dive deeper into the Dream?
Table of Contents
- The Sandman Release Date: When Will The Sandman Be On Netflix?
- The Sandman Cast: Who Will Play the Characters in Netflix's The Sandman?
- The Sandman Crew: Who Will Be Working Behind the Scenes in Netflix's The Sandman?
- The Sandman Plot: On What Comic Book Issues Will The Sandman Be Based On?
- The Sandman Episodes: How Many Episodes of The Sandman Will Be Released?
- The Sandman Photos: Are There New Photos of The Sandman?
- The Sandman Trailer: Where Can I Watch The Sandman Trailer?
- The Sandman Season 2
- The Sandman Where to Watch: Where Can I Watch The Sandman?
Here is everything we know so far about Netflix's The Sandman.
The Sandman Release Date: When Will The Sandman Be On Netflix?
During the Netflix Geeked event in June 2021, Netflix announced that it will adapt Gaiman's graphic novel into a television series. The Sandman reportedly began filming in October 2020, but just like everything else, filming took a hit when the CoVid-19 pandemic struck. The series is already in post-production in early 2022, with Netflix including the show in its 2022 lineup.
There have been rumors that Netflix canceled the production of the series. Gaiman promptly invalidated the claims via a tweet responding to a fan.
The Sandman Behind the Scenes
Here is a sneak peek behind the scenes on the set of The Sandman.
The Sandman Announcement Video
By the June 2022 Netflix Geeked Week event, the release date of The Sandman was announced - the most-awaited series adaptation premiered on Netflix on August 5, 2022.
Here is the date announcement video for The Sandman:
The Sandman Cast: Who Will Play the Characters in Netflix's The Sandman?
The Sandman revolves around the stories of seven cosmic entities known as The Endless. The Endless are siblings older than the gods and are personifications of abstract concepts and ideas that come with life. The siblings include Death, Desire, Destiny, Despair, Delirium, Destruction, and the main character of the entire series, Dream.
Netflix has released two casting announcements in January and May of 2021. Most of the major characters have been cast so far, with Tom Sturridge taking the lead role of Dream for the show. Some of Dream's siblings have also been cast, with Kirby Howell-Baptiste playing Death, Mason Alexander Park playing Desire, and Donna Preston playing Despair.
Netflix revealed that Mason Alexander Park earned the role of Desire after sending Gaiman and one of the show's executive producers a DM.
The other major characters of the show who have been cast are Gwendoline Christie as Lucifer Morningstar and Charles Dance as Roderick Burgess.
One major liberty that Gaiman and the Netflix team took was casting actors who did not match the gender of the original character in the comic books. This was the case for Christie, who will be playing Lucifer, and Vivienne Acheampong, who will play Lucienne.
The other actors involved in the series are Sanjeev Bhaskar and Asim Chaudhry, who will play the brothers Cain and Abel. Boyd Holbrook will play The Corinthian, while Jenna Coleman will play Johanna Constantine, the grandmother of another DC star, John Constantine. Patton Oswalt will voice Matthew the Raven, David Thewlis will take the role of John Dee, and Razane Jammal will play Lyta Hall. We will also see Niamh Walsh and Joley Richardson play the younger and older versions of Ethel Cripps. Kyo Ra will play Rose Walker, Sandra James Young will appear as Unity Kinkaid, and Stephen Fry will play Gilbert.
Who's Who Guide to Sandman
Netflix released a quick guide to the main characters appearing in the first season of The Sandman. It included Johanna Constantine, Corinthian, Lucienne, and Matthew the Raven.
Why We Have Johanna Constantine Instead of John Constantine
When Neil Gaiman spoke with Slashfilm for The Sandman, he explained that the decision to change John for his ancestor Johanna was for the fans - he wanted to introduce viewers to the series even without knowing anything about pre-existing characters.
It was economy. It was the economy of filmmaking. We started 'Sandman' going — anybody watching 'Sandman,' we are going to go, 'You are starting here. This is the first place. You are not expected to have brought any knowledge with you.' When I wrote 'Dream a Little Dream of Me,' 'Sandman' issue 3, I knew everybody knew John Constantine. He had his own comic, 'Hellblazer.' I wanted to bring some of his readers into 'Sandman.' Later on, I had an enormous amount of fun creating Johanna Constantine, his ancestor, and having her appear a couple of times, and it was really nice and solid
The Sandman Crew: Who Will Be Working Behind the Scenes in Netflix's The Sandman?
Neil Gaiman will take an active role in the production of The Sandman as an Executive Producer and writer. Gaiman will be writing with David S. Goyer (known for his work with Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, and Foundation) and showrunner Allan Heinberg (who also worked in Wonder Woman and Grey's Anatomy).
Another heavy hitter who will work on The Sandman is Jon Gary Steele, who will be creating the sets for the series. Steele is up to the challenge of realising the mystic world of Sandman after creating beautiful set designs for other big shows like the Outlander.
The Sandman Plot: On What Comic Book Issues Will The Sandman Be Based On?
Netflix released the official synopsis for The Sandman on their site. It read:
"A rich blend of modern myth and dark fantasy in which contemporary fiction, historical drama, and legend are seamlessly interwoven, The Sandman follows the people and places affected by Morpheus, the Dream King, as he mends the cosmic — and human — mistakes he's made during his vast existence."
The Sandman will be directly inspired by the first three volumes of the graphic novel. This season will cover Volume 1: Preludes and Nocturnes, Volume 2: The Doll's House, and the first parts of Volume 3: Dream Country.
In the first look Netflix released in September 2021, we saw Dream captured by The Order of Ancient Mysteries and escaping their clutches. Following the plots in the first three volumes of the comic book series, we can likely assume that in this season of The Sandman, Dream will take us along his journey as he reclaims his lost possessions that hold much of his power.
The Sandman comic book has 10 volumes and a total of 75 issues. Most fans hope that all the volumes will be adapted for TV, but Netflix has a reputation for cutting a series halfway through. Gaiman reassured his fans that there are safety nets in place to prevent this from happening, with reports that The Sandman Season 2 is already agreed upon.
How The Sandman Series Differs From the Graphic Novel
Though The Sandman remains relatively faithful to its source material, there are still some notable differences. Here are some these differences.
The series included scenes that happened off-panel in the comic book volumes. In the television show, we see Ethel Cripps die in her son's arms, bestowing him with the amulet. We also see more of Hal's musical scenes that Gaiman said were difficult to give justice to in the comics.
The first season of The Sandman was based on the graphic series' first two volumes, which covered 16 issues. Since the TV adaptation only has 10 episodes, several storylines were portrayed to happen simultaneously.
The Corinthian makes his debut in The Doll House issue in the graphic books, but in the television adaptation, he is immediately introduced as the series' main antagonist.
The Sandman Episodes: How Many Episodes of The Sandman Will Be Released?
Netflix announced that The Sandman will have ten episodes, plus one extra episode. In one interview with Empire Magazine, Gaiman said that each episode will be "wildly different" from one another. He said:
"You watch Episode 1 and think, 'Oh, I get this thing: it's like "Downton Abbey," but with magic. Then you'll be wondering, 'What the hell is this?' by Episode 2, when you're meeting Gregory the Gargoyle in The Dreaming. Episode 5 is about as dark and traumatic as anything is ever gonna get, then you've got Episode 6, which is probably the most feel-good of all the episodes."
Gaiman will write the first episode with David Goyer. There have been recent reports saying that Netflix is spending $15 million for each episode of The Sandman. With 11 episodes projected, Netflix is may spend at least $165 million on the series.
The Sandman Episodes
Gaiman explained in the same interview that each episode is different and that it is all about surprising the audience. Here are the titles and quick overviews of what to expect from each episode.
Chapter 1: Sleep of the Just
The first episode shows us how the Sandman was captured, how he escaped, and the consequences of his stealing from the God of Dreams.
Chapter 2: Imperfect Hosts
When he returns to the Dreaming, Morpheus also learns about the damage his absences has caused to his realm. We also meet some of the residents of the Dreaming, like Lucienne and the brothers Cain and Abel.
Chapter 3: Dream a Little Dream of Me
We jump back to modern times and witness Johanna Constantine exorcise a demon. Morpheus also helps Constantine when she falls into an intense dream. Meanwhile, Ethel Cripps pays a visit to her son in a desperate attempt to keep them both safe.
Chapter 4: A Hope in Hell
Morpheus pays a visit to Lucifer Morningstar in Hell to retrieve his helm. Lucifer agrees to return it on one condition.
Chapter 5: 24/7
John Dee lounges in a diner, reveling in his newfound freedom, as he watches the drama around him unfold.
Chapter 6: The Sound of Her Wings
We meet Death, Dream's older sister, and get a glimpse of how close they are as siblings. Dream asks the existential questions that have been bothering him, and Death offers him advice. The episode also takes us back to 1789, where we meet Lady Johanna and the immortal Hob Gadling.
Chapter 7: The Doll's House
In this episode, which shares the same title as the second volume of the graphic comic, we are taken to Florida in 2015. We meet siblings Jed and Rose, who are caught in their parent's separation. Later on, we meet a grown-up Rose living in the UK, where her fortune is finally turning.
Meanwhile, a gruesome convention is about to happen, and Corinthian could attend.
Chapter 8: Playing House
Rose continues looking for her brothers while Dream is almost done collecting his creations.
Chapter 9: Collectors
Rose shares her secrets with her friend Lyta, who seems to know more than she is letting on. The convention finally happens.
Chapter 10: Lost Hearts
Dream has to face his biggest confrontation yet while Rose has to make a decision.
The Sandman Bonus Episode
Sandman has one last surprise in store, as they gift fans with one bonus episode released on August 19, 2022.
The episode is entitled A Dream of a Thousand Cats/Calliope and is based on Dream Country, the arc of the graphic novel that includes issues 17 to 20.
Calliope is an episode about a writer who meets Morpheus as they search for inspiration.
The actors starring in this section of the episode are Melissanthi Mahut as Calliope and Arthur Darvill as Richard Madoc. The actresses playing the Fates are Nina Wadia as Fate Mother, Souad Faress as Fate Crone, and Dinita Gohil as Fate Maiden. We will also see Kevin Harvey as Larry, Amita Suman as Nora, and Derek Jacobi as Erasmus Fry.
Executive Producer Allan Heinberg talked about how impressed he was with the actors playing major characters in the episode. When speaking about Meissanthi, he said:
With Melissanthi, we got her self-tape, her audition. And that was it. It was nobody else. The fact that she’s of Greek ancestry made it even more perfect. I was not familiar with her work at the time, but I was absolutely blown away by her.
As for Arthur Darvill, Heinberg commented:
Once Arthur was available and game, we didn’t look anywhere else. He was the Ric Madoc of our dreams, and, in performance, even more so. I think he shows you this man’s soul and somehow makes him not a monster.
When Heinberg discussed Jacobi as Erasmus Fry, he said:
That’s a tough role. His charm and wit and intelligence... we were extremely lucky. This is a very difficult story. And I think the presence of those three actors made it really compelling and human and deeply moving.
A Dream of a Thousand Cats
This section of the bonus episode tells the story of a Siamese cat dreaming about a new world. It may be one of the most special episodes in the series because it is the first-ever animated Sandman story. Hisko Hulsing, the Dutch director and production designer of the episode section, talked about his goal for the animation.
We endeavored to make the animated version of ‘A Dream of a Thousand Cats’ as mesmerizing and hypnotic as we could by utilizing the magic of real oil paintings on canvas. We combined the paintings with classically drawn 2D animation, based on realistic 3D animation of telepathic cats in order to create a trippy world that feels both grounded and dreamy at the same time. Untold Studio’s in London created the breathtaking 3D animation of the cats. The wonderful 2D animation, oil paintings and stylizing were all done at Submarine Studio’s in Amsterdam.
A Dream of a Thousand Cats has a very impressive voice-over cast led by Sandra Oh as The Prophet. She is joined by Rosie Day as The Tabby Kitten, David Gyasi as The Grey Cat, and Joe Lycett as The Black Cat. James McAvoy lends his voice for the Golden-Haired Man, while David Tennant voices Don and Georgia Tennant voices Laura Lynn. Michael Sheen plays as Paul, and Anna Lundberg plays Marion. Nonso Anozie voices Wyvern, Diane Morgan voices Gryphon, and Tom Wu voices Hippogriff.
Neil Gaiman becomes a part of the episode as the Crow/Skull Bird.
Bonus Episode Sneak Peek
Watch the sneak peek for the bonus episode of The Sandman here.
The Sandman Photos: Are There New Photos of The Sandman?
Empire recently released photos of The Sandman featuring the different characters as portrayed by famous actors. Scroll through the photos here:
The Sandman Poster
A promotional poster for The Sandman was released during the 2022 San Diego Comic-Con. The poster makes us even more excited than we already are for the upcoming adaptation of the Neil Gaiman classic.
The Sandman Trailer: Where Can I Watch The Sandman Trailer?
Here is the first look released in September 2021. Watch The Sandman first look here:
The Sandman Official Trailer
On July 24, 2022, Netflix released the official trailer for the series. Watch the trailer here:
The Sandman: The World of The Endless
On July 26, Netflix released a featurette video interviewing some of the greatest influences behind the series. We see Neil Gaiman, Tom Sturridge, Jenna Coleman, Gwendoline Christie, and Allan Heinberg describe how they feel about the first season of The Sandman.
The Sandman Clips
On July 25, exclusive clips from the Sandman were released showing scenes involving Sandman's interaction with Lucifer and Death.
Here is the clip showing Dream's visit to hell:
This is the clip for Dream's trip with Death:
The Sandman Deleted Scene
It seems Neil Gaiman and the entire Sandman crew are not yet done spoiling us Sandman fans.
After the release of the bonus episode, we also got to watch the deleted scene from The Sandman's first episode.
The Sandman Season 2
The first season of The Sandman was well beyond the expectations of anxious fans. With the apparent success of The Sandman, a season 2 seems to natural next step, but Neil Gaiman explained through a Tweet why it might not be happening.
The Sandman Where to Watch: Where Can I Watch The Sandman?
The Sandman has been a hit classic since its initial publication in 1989. All eyes are on Netflix, with fans waiting in eager anticipation for the long-awaited adaptation of the books. We have high hopes for the adaptation, and it's only a matter of time before we get to take deep dive into the kingdom of dreams.