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Published On: Sun, Mar 6th, 2016

‘Sandman’ movie: Joseph Gordon-Levitt out, Eric Heisserer in

Just a day after The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that Eric Heisserer was picked to write a new adaptation of Sandman comes news that actor, producer, director Joseph Gordon-Levitt has exited the project.

In a lengthy Facebook post, Gordon-Levitt was surprisingly open about why he decided to leave. He cited creative differences with New Line, the Warner Bros. subsidiary now handling all movie projects based on DC Comics’ Vertigo properties.

The Sandman 21 Season of the Mists comic book cover“And a few months ago, I came to realize that the folks at New Line and I just don’t see eye to eye on what makes Sandman special, and what a film adaptation could/should be,” Gordon-Levitt wrote. “So unfortunately, I decided to remove myself from the project. I wish nothing but the best for the team moving forward.”

Heisserer worked on the remake of A Nightmare on Elm Street, New Line’s The Conjuring 2 and Denis Villeneuve’s The Story Of Your Life.

Back in June 2015, Gordon-Levitt was still adamant about bringing Sandman to the big screen. That month, the film also shifted to New Line.

Sandman is one of the most acclaimed series from Vertigo and originally ran from 1989 to 1996.

Creator Neil Gaiman took to Twitter to voice support for Gordon-Levitt, writing that he hopes to work with the talented actor/director/producer again.

And, for the record, my respect for @hitRECordJoe, is undiminished. Getting to know him was the best bit of the last round. He’s special. – @neilhimself

I very much hope so. I would love to work with @hitRECordJoesome more. He’s smart, honest & really nice – @neilhimself

Full statement:

RE: SANDMAN

So, as you might know if you like to follow these sorts of things, a while back, David Goyer and I made a producing deal with Warner Brothers to develop a movie adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s SANDMAN. Neil himself came on as an executive producer, we hired the excellent screenwriter, Jack Thorne, and we started in on the ambitious task of adapting one of the most beloved and boundary-pushing titles in the world of comics. I was pleased with the progress we were making, even though we still had quite a ways to go.

Recently, as you also might know if you like to follow these sorts of things, the sorta “ownership” (for lack of a better term) of the Sandman material changed hands when Warner Brothers shifted the entire catalogue of Vertigo comics (an imprint of DC) to their subsidiary, New Line. And a few months ago, I came to realize that the folks at New Line and I just don’t see eye to eye on what makes Sandman special, and what a film adaptation could/should be. So unfortunately, I decided to remove myself from the project. I wish nothing but the best for the team moving forward.

I’d like to thank all the great people I’ve had the opportunity to work with on this one. I’ve had a blast with and learned a ton from David and Jack. Niija Kuykendall, Greg Silverman, and everyone at Warner Brothers have been fantastic, as have Geoff Johns and everyone at DC. And it’s been a particular privilege as well as a rocking good time getting to know Mr. Gaiman, whose generous insights and masterful work have certainly convinced me that the Lord of Dreams and the Prince of Stories are one and the same Endless pattern.

Sandman DC Comics photo

 

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About the Author

- Stephen is a contributor and writer on The Dispatch. Stephen is the founder and editor for the Steven Spielberg Fan Club website and contributes to pop culture stories on The Dispatch, especially upcoming movie news. Beginning in 2016, Stephen took the role of Managing Editor for the Tampa Dispatch.

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