After DC Comics already made television news by having Gotham picked up as a series by Fox, it looks like another DC property is headed to the small screen. With “Arrow” at the CW and “Gotham” headed to FOX, something of a bit more occult flavor is headed to NBC. According to Deadline, Constantine, based on the DC Comics character John Constantine, has been sold to NBC with penalty and will be written and executive produced by Daniel Cerone (“The Mentalist”) and David S. Goyer (Man of Steel).
The character of John Constantine was created in 1985 by writer Alan Moore and artists Steve Bissette and Jamie Delano, and was featured in a comic book entitled Hellblazer at DC’s mature readers imprint, Vertigo. Constantine fits the anti-hero bill more than the heroic one, as he’s often depicted as a con man turned supernatural detective that defends the world from dark forces more out of feeding an addiction to adrenaline than anything else. Since Hellblazer was cancelled by DC Comics last year, Constantine has been a feature character in the mainline DC Universe as a member of Justice League Dark, an alliance of more supernatural characters that exist to solve the magical ailments that befall the DC Universe.
Also of note is that director Guillermo Del Toro has been working on a project related to the characters of Justice League Dark called Dark Universe for most of the last year, and it apparently also includes Constantine. There’s no word as of yet about how that project may potentially be affected by this development.
The last time the character appeared outside of the comics was in the 2005 film Constantine, starring Keanu Reeves and Rachel Weisz. That film was a drastic departure from the source material, particularly with Reeves’ casting, since Constantine of the comics is a British cynic who, in part, was created because the artists wished to draw a character resembling the musical artist Sting (they were big fans of the Police). Whether or not Constantine’s traditional nationality and character components will be maintained was not detailed in this early announcement.
Either way, this represents quite the push for DC Entertainment onto the small screen, interestingly in the same week as the premiere of “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” The DC Universe is a vast place across multiple storytelling genres, and picking up a character like John Constantine for a television series will likely be definitive proof of that.
Be sure to keep your eye on GeekNation for any other surprises that may come up. At this point, who knows what could be next?
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