io9 recently shared two pieces on the American Gods series’ relationship to its source material. The series will not only feature a season finale that isn’t in Neil Gaiman’s 2001 novel, but the show writers also took notes from Gaiman to make sure they’re set up for the material in his planned American Gods sequel.
Actor Ricky Whittle, who stars as Shadow Moon in the series, spoke to io9 about his own experience with the novel. “I didn’t get to kind of finish the book until we wrapped,” he said, “but that’s when I really realized what Bryan [Fuller] and Michael [Green] had done with the storyline. The whole kind of timeline had changed around, so even hardcore American Gods fans won’t know what’s going on in this show. It’s going to be fresh for their eyes. Even the season finale is not in the books. So, everything you loved that’s in the book is going to be in the show, but then so much more.”
In addition, Gaiman revealed in an Entertainment Weekly interview that he’s let the showrunners in on a few secrets from the planned American Gods sequel. He said: “There were moments, which they were very good about listening to, when I would say, ‘Okay, nobody but you two knows anything at all about the plot of American Gods 2, but I need to tell you that this line, which seems like a bit of dialogue that you could lose, will become important. Or this little scene — an indigenous scene — which seems trivial will become important one day and if we get to season 5, we’ll need it then, so let’s put it here now.'”
Gaiman has planned the American Gods sequel for years now, but it doesn’t sound like he’s getting to it any time soon. Admittedly, he’s been rather busy lately. “In the last couple of years, I finished the six-hour-long adaptation of Good Omens for the BBC,” he said, “I’m wrapping up the Norse mythology book, and right now I’m about a third of the way through the next Neverwhere novel, which is what has to be finished next because it’s the next thing in my head.”
“And then after that,” Gaiman continued, “I will probably write a children’s book because there are at least two in my head right now that are jumping up and down, looking rather like small kids desperate to use a toilet, waving their hands going, ‘Me! Me! Look, me, now, please!’ And then I’ll probably start American Gods 2, if there is still a will to write.”
Will this lead to a Winds of Winter situation? Or will this end up more like J.K. Rowling’s involvement with the earlier Harry Potter movies’ scripts? Stay tuned!
American Gods premieres on Starz on April 30. For a preview of what’s in store, you can read the TMS review of the first episode: “unbelievably, no-holds-barred STUNNING…like nothing you’ve ever seen before.”
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