Neil Gaiman's "American Gods," comes to TV

American Gods (TV series)

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American Gods
American Gods logo.png
Genre
Based onAmerican Gods
by Neil Gaiman
Developed by
Starring
Composer(s)Brian Reitzell
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes(list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
  • Bryan Fuller
  • Michael Green
  • Neil Gaiman
  • Craig Cegielski
  • Stefanie Berk
  • Thom Beers
Location(s)Toronto, Ontario
Production company(s)
Release
Original networkStarz
Original releaseApril 30, 2017 – present
External links
Official website

American Gods is an American television series developed by Bryan Fuller and Michael Green for Starz, based on the novel of the same name by author Neil Gaiman. Fuller and Green wrote the first episode and serve as showrunners. Gaiman serves as executive producer along with Fuller, Green, Craig Cegielski, Stefanie Berk, and Thom Beers. The eight-episode first season premiered on the Starz app on April 30, 2017.

Premise

The series focuses on Shadow Moon, a man serving three years in prison. With only days remaining in his sentence, Shadow is given an unexpected early release after his beloved wife Laura is killed. Shadow finds himself next to a man named Wednesday, who offers Shadow a job. Wednesday appears to be nothing but a con artist who needs Shadow as a bodyguard, but is in fact the god Odin. Wednesday is making his way across America, gathering all the old gods, who have now incorporated themselves into American life, to confront the New Gods, including Media and Technology, who grow stronger.

Cast

Main

Recurring

Episodes

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateU.S. viewers
(millions)
1"The Bone Orchard"David SladeBryan Fuller & Michael GreenApril 30, 2017TBD
2"The Secret of Spoons"[17]TBATBAMay 7, 2017TBD
3"Head Full of Snow"[17]TBATBAMay 14, 2017TBD
4"Git Gone"[17]TBATBAMay 21, 2017TBD
5"Lemon Scented You"[17]TBATBAMay 28, 2017TBD
6"A Murder of Gods"[17]TBATBAJune 4, 2017TBD
7"A Prayer for Mad Sweeney"[17]TBATBAJune 11, 2017TBD
8"Come to Jesus"[17]TBATBAJune 18, 2017TBD

Development

Production

In 2011, American Gods author Neil Gaiman stated at the Edinburgh International Book Festival that HBO had expressed an interest in adapting the novel into a television series.[18][19] In March 2013 Gaiman spoke of the project's progress at the Cambridge International Student Film Festival, and confirmed that the prospective series' opening episode would "contain new elements and details" while still remaining "a lot like the opening chapters of the book".[20] He also commented that the book would only make up the first two seasons of the show and that he was still working on the pilot script, as his first script was not close enough to his book for HBO's satisfaction.[21] In November 2013 Gaiman announced on Reddit that the TV series was still in the works but no longer at HBO.[22]

In 2014, HBO's president of programming Michael Lombardo revealed that the project had been abandoned because they could not get the script right: "We tried three different writers, we put a lot of effort into it. Some things just don't happen".[23]

In February 2014, Fremantle Media acquired the rights to adapt the novel as a fantasy drama series.[24] In July 2014, it was announced that Starz would be developing the series with Bryan Fuller and Michael Green.[25]

Fuller stated that the series would be "[following] the events of the books but expanding those events, and expanding the point of view to go above and beyond Shadow and Wednesday".[26] Permission has been given for the series to incorporate elements from the book's companion, Anansi Boys.[26] Fuller also confirmed that Gaiman is "very involved" with the production and expressed his hope that Gaiman would write an episode himself.[26]

On June 16, 2015, Starz officially announced that it had greenlit the series.[27][28] Showrunner Bryan Fuller estimated in May 2015 that the show would likely air in "late 2016";[29] however, it premiered in April 2017, and the first season will consist of eight episodes.[14][30] The shooting was scheduled to begin on March 1, 2016, in Toronto and continue until September.[31]

During an interview with Neil Gaiman on June 24, 2016, he discussed plans for future seasons of the show beyond the first, should it be continued, and noting that the first season only covers the first third of the novel. The second season is intended to cover the Lakeside section of the novel, and "a big pivotal thing that happens to Mr. Wednesday" will likely be a season finale for either the second or third season.[32]

Casting

On January 28, 2016, Ricky Whittle was cast as the lead character, Shadow Moon.[1] On March 2, 2016, it was announced that Ian McShane had been cast as Mr. Wednesday.[2] It was later announced on March 17, 2016, that Emily Browning will play Laura Moon, Shadow's wife.[3] On March 23, 2016, it was announced that Sean HarrisYetide Badaki and Bruce Langley would play the respective roles of Mad Sweeney, Bilquis and Technical Boy.[6] On April 14, 2016, Jonathan Tucker and Crispin Glover were cast as Low Key Lyesmith and Mr. World.[4] On April 21, 2016, Cloris Leachman was cast as Zorya Vechernyaya, Peter Stormare as Czernobog, Chris Obi as Mr. Jaquel, and Mousa Kraish as the Jinn.[8]

On May 6, 2016, it was announced that Sean Harris had departed the series due to personal reasons and the role of "Mad Sweeney" was being recast.[33] On May 11, 2016, it was announced that Pablo Schreiber would take over the role of Mad Sweeney.[7] In June 2016, it was announced that Gillian Anderson would portray Media.[9] On June 15, 2016, it was announced that Omid AbtahiOrlando Jones and Demore Barnes would join the cast as Salim, Mr. Nancy and Mr. Ibis, respectively.[10][11]

On July 15, 2016, it was announced that Dane Cook was set to appear as Robbie,[12] and a week later, Kristin Chenoweth as Easter.[13]

Marketing

The first trailer for the series was released on July 22, 2016, at San Diego Comic-Con International.[34]

Broadcast

American Gods premieres each week in the U.S. on the Starz app, before airing the same day on Starz at 9:00 pm (Eastern). Each episode becomes available internationally on Amazon Prime the day after the U.S. broadcast.[35]

Reception

The first season of American Gods has received positive reviews from critics. On Metacritic, it has a score of 76 out of 100 based on 29 reviews, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[36] On Rotten Tomatoes, it has a 91% rating with an average score of 8.26 out of 10 based on 43 reviews.[37]


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