The box office receipts for the Matthew Vaughn-directed adaptation of Neil Gaiman‘s Stardust might have been a source of disappointment for Paramount, but Gaiman remains undaunted; in fact, he’s got a (tongue in cheek) investment opportunity for fans of his work.
Gaiman spoke with Empire at the British premiere for Stardust this week, and was naturally asked about the likelihood of bringing his much-loved Sandman series to the big screen. His response, from the article:
“I would always give anything to Terry Gilliam, forever, so if Terry Gilliam ever wants to do Sandman then as far as I’m concerned Terry Gilliam should do Sandman…but Terry’s busy trying to get Good Omens made that Terry Pratchett and I wrote. He needs someone to give him $70 million. If you or any of your readers have a spare 70 million dollars you are not doing anything with, then send it to T Gilliam, care of the London Pipe Organisation.”
Gaiman was clearly only half-serious, but given Gilliam’s historic difficulties when it comes to securing studio financing (if you haven’t yet seen Lost in La Mancha, which chronicles the director’s heartbreakingly star-crossed efforts to complete his Don Quixote adaptation, you’re missing out), the idea has at least hypothetical merit. The micro-investment strategy has worked (albeit on a much smaller scale) for musicians such as Marillion, who have bankrolled entire projects with fan funding.
Yeah, probably not gonna happen here. But the synopsis for Good Omens — the 1996 Gaiman/Pratchett novel that Empire describes as “dark, philosophical and barkingly funny” — reads like vintage Gilliam. From the article:
Angel Aziraphale and demon Crowley have got rather fond of Earth and are thusly annoyed to discover that the Antichrist is going to show up and bring it to an end. Their ensuing partnership is one of the finest ever committed to print, besides which it’s ridiculously funny and cleverly plotted.
Sounds like it could be great. Now all we need is for two million Gilliam and/or Gaiman fans to write $35 checks. Spread the word.