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Bryan Fuller Reassures Fans That His American Gods Adaptation Will Be Appropriately Diverse

"We have to be moving forward with a representation that is accurate to the world."


Neil Gaiman’s novel, American Gods, is chock full of gods from all over the world representing myriad cultures. It makes sense, then, that the cast of any film or TV adaptation would have to not only include people of color, but they would have to be in the majority. Given Hollywood’s history of whitewashing, it’s understandable that some fans of the book are concerned that the upcoming Bryan Fuller television adaptation for Starz might suffer the same fate, but worry not. It seems that, for Fuller, diverse casting is a huge priority.

In an interview he did recently with Den of Geek, he discussed how thrilled he is to be able to provide more media representation of people of color through American Gods:

One of the things I’m most excited about for American Gods is the diversity in the cast because there’s such a wide range of ethnic Gods in the world. Right now, we’re imagining two white roles and everybody else is non-white, so my goal, Michael’s goal, certainly Neil’s goal has been to have a very ethnically diverse cast. That’s important to all of us.

Also now, we can cite Empire and we can cite The Walking Dead as being primarily non-white in their casting, and they’re the two biggest shows in the world right now, so that has to say something. We have to be moving forward with a representation that is accurate to the world.

There’s no excuse with American Gods. There’s absolutely no excuse to cast say, Mr Ibis and Mr Jacquel as…those should be African-origin actors in terms of their heritage.

As to who those actors will be, they’re apparently already talking to several people, but we likely won’t be hearing about it until they walk out on the stage at a San Diego Comic-Con:

We haven’t made an offer but we’ve made an approach to one actor in particular. It all hinges on the final trigger being pulled by Starz. We have several people lined up that we would love to get in various roles and plan on making approaches.

Neil [Gaiman’s] plan—and Neil’s very internet savvy—what Neil would like to do is cast Laura and Shadow and Wednesday and Mad Sweeney and Bilquis, because Bilquis will be a major character in the show, and the Technical Boy and then trot them all out on-stage at a Comic-Con coming up. That’s his plan. He’s saying ‘I don’t want to make any casting announcements, I want to announce the cast in full when they walk out on stage at a Comic-Con’.

The question is, will you be able to wait for that? Also, what do you think about the upcoming American Gods adaptation? Is it in good hands with Fuller? Tell us in the comments!

(via Blastr)

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Teresa Jusino (she/her) is a native New Yorker and a proud Puerto Rican, Jewish, bisexual woman with ADHD. She's been writing professionally since 2010 and was a former Mary Sue assistant editor from 2015-18. Teresa's returned to play in the TMS sandbox as a freelancer. When not writing about pop culture, she's writing screenplays and is the creator of your future favorite genre show. Teresa lives in L.A. with her brilliant wife. Her other great loves include: Star Trek, The Last of Us, anything by Brian K. Vaughan, and her Level 5 android Paladin named Lal.