In 1989, Neil Gaiman introduced Sandman, a comic book series about the world of dreams and the man who controls it. Since then, Hollywood has done its best to turn the story of Morpheus, also known as Dream, into a film.
However, it wasn't until 2013 that a commitment to a Sandman film became a reality, with actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt attached to the project to take on the title role, David Goyer as producer and Jack Thorne writing the script. However, that was two years ago, and the movie still isn't close to filming.
Eventually, DC Comics decided that its Vertigo line of comics, which Sandman belongs to, wouldn't have its films handled by Warner Brothers, but by New Line Cinema instead. This also served to delay the project.
Now, though, in an interview with Collider, Goyer stated that filming for Sandman should start in 2016. Note the word "should," because there's still no guarantee that this film will ever happen.
"We're just about to do a new draft," said Goyer. "All of the Vertigo properties ported over to New Line a few months ago. There was a decision from the higher-ups that New Line would focus on the Vertigo properties and Warner Bros would focus on the DC properties. So we're just starting a re-write with a really fantastic writer that fans of your site will enjoy that's coming aboard, but I can't quite announce it yet."
This also confirms that Jack Thorne is no longer attached to the project as the writer, but Goyer didn't come out and say who this new writer is (although fans of the comic books would probably prefer Gaiman to sign on).
Goyer also explained why working with New Line on the Sandman movie is better than doing it through Warner Brothers.
"I think that the Vertigo properties are a bit more quirky and off-center than kind of the mainstream superhero stuff at Warners," said Goyer. "But I understand the decision because we're not having to fight for release dates with the Vertigo stuff like we would have been having to do over at Warner Bros. But I feel confident that film will go into production hopefully next year."
The story of Sandman is an ongoing one that lasted from 1989 to 1996, so for many fans, it makes more sense that the story should become a TV series. However, Gordon-Levitt recently assured fans that Sandman works better as a film, rather than a TV series because a movie would have a bigger budget to look better on a "visual level."
Goyer hopes that Sandman will finally go into production in 2016, but until that's confirmed, fans of the comic book series shouldn't hold their breath.