Sam Mendes Directing Adaptation of Vertigo's Preacher
by Alex Billington
October 29, 2008
Columbia Pictures announces today that Sam Mendes, of Road to Perdition, Jarhead, and the upcoming Revolutionary Road, will direct an adaptation of Vertigo's Preacher comic series. No writer has been hired yet, but Mendes himself will search for one over the next few months. Neal Moritz (who has been in the news a lot recently) will be producing. The comic tells the story of a down-and-out Texas preacher possessed by Genesis, a supernatural entity conceived by the unnatural coupling of an angel and a demon. Given immense powers, he teames up with an old girlfriend and a hard-drinking Irish vampire to set out on a journey across America to find God - who apparently had abandoned his duties in heaven.
Merging with a bizarre spiritual force called Genesis, Preacher Jesse Custer becomes completely disillusioned with the beliefs that he had dedicated his entire life to. Now possessing the power of the word, an ability to make people do whatever he utters, Custer begins a violent and riotous journey across the country. Joined by his girlfriend Tulip and the hard drinking Irish vampire Cassidy, the Preacher loses faith in both man and God as he witnesses dark atrocities and improbable calamities during his exploration of America.
If it sounds badass, that's because it is. Preacher was one of the most popular comics in the late 1990s that has been a candidate for adaptation for years, taking the form an HBO series and feature produced by Kevin Smith, but neither of which ever came to fruition. This latest iteration has nothing to do with the past projects and will be adapted from the ground up again. It sounds like it could be a very badass story, especially in the hands of Sam "Kate & Leo Reunited" Mendes. Let's just hope that this isn't as doomed as the the other versions of the projects, because I'd actually like to see it come together. Though I do think the success of The Dark Knight has made this a much bigger priority for Columbia. Anyone excited?
bat on Oct 29, 2008
why is everyone still talking about dark knight. that movie didn't change shit about comic book films. No doubt it was a good film but it wasn't great. And that preacher thing sounds really interesting.
Reaper on Oct 29, 2008
i agree with reaper on it didn't change shit dark knight wasn't great b/c it was dark it was great b/c it stayed close to the source material if you stay close to source material you get a good movie like spiderman/ironman/ stay close to source material no matter how dark it is and it will be good
nelson on Oct 29, 2008
What happened to HBO?
sumonesumtime on Oct 29, 2008
The Preacher graphic novels are an awesome read, but this tale of good and evil, its road trip style and numerous characters are spread over nine books. Its great to have someone of Mendes' calibre behind the venture but will this be one off film influenced by the adult comic? A compact trilogy to give the material some breathing room? Despite its popularity in comic book circles, this is not known worldwide by the general public. I can only assume they will start the ball rolling with the groundwork and set up of the overall premise. Then include a resolution of sorts to an early element of the story, thereby leaving the door open on further parts based on till receipts. Fingers crossed, because this could be fantastic!
Gary the Gooner on Oct 29, 2008
Fuelbot on Oct 29, 2008
I remember when there was all that talk of a Preacher mini-series. I crossed my fingers hard for that. And when Nathan Fillion was between jobs, I was beginning to lose feeling/circulation in my digits. Shame nothing came of that. I think I would have preferred a longer mini-series than the whole thing compressed into a couple of hours.
Chris on Oct 29, 2008
I am sure like most stories that take on popular religious views it will be extremely neutered in the movie rendition. See "The Golden Compass" of His Dark Trilogy and "Hellblazer" comic, which you will know as "Constantine".
Stevo on Oct 29, 2008
Well, Golden Compass didn't have that much religious material to be neutered, especially when compared to the second and third books in the trilogy; it remains to be seen, if those get made, what they'll do with the extreme anti-church views then. Hellblazer/Constantine though - right on. Regardless, super excited for this! Although I feel the same way about the Preacher movie being made as I do about Y: The Last Man - make it a miniseries or TV show, there's too much good material to be covered in 2.5 hours.
ohsamma on Oct 30, 2008
"why is everyone still talking about dark knight. that movie didn't change shit about comic book films." Reaper I have to disagree. The single biggest thing that DK did was show Hollywood that they could make "comic book movies" that were adult oriented and which could result in blockbuster crowds. Most people in the movie business are scared to put money and talent into anything that isn't tried and true. For a long time that meant comic book movies were doomed to be crappy adaptations, or bubble-gum movies slanted towards a PG audience. Material like Preacher can't be made that way. The success of DK (and Ironman) has opened the doors to Hollywood putting a bigger emphasis on these movies. With studios giving "darker" comic material a closer look, handing out bigger budgets to the production teams and more talented actors showing an interest in the materials, comic book movies are primed for a golden age...thanks in large part to Dark Knight.
joel on Oct 30, 2008
Sounds fairly awesome and Mendes name just elevates it.
Ryan on Oct 30, 2008
Some of you guys need to get up to date on the project... the HBO series was canned about 5-6 months ago according to the Hollywood Reporter. And yes, the source material is ****ing brilliant so this should be good if Mendes does in fact get past pre-production on it.
BahHumbug on Oct 30, 2008
Have to agree with SteveO on this. 'Preacher', was/is a great comic book series, but the material would be regarded as Hollywood under pressure from the American religious sects as 'Blasphemous'. To get it out, it'll have all its punches neutered to nothingness. I imagine we'll end up with something Dogma-ish (which is not necessarily a bad thing, it'll just be like having Preacher-Lite when you could've had the full fat version...) Dr.Duvel
Dr.Duvel on Oct 31, 2008
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