Neil Gaiman Is Working On A Terry Pratchett Radio Play

Is it just me, or does Neil Gaiman look like he'd make a pretty good Doctor himself? (Writer Pictures via AP Images)

Neil Gaiman (Writer Pictures via AP Images)

There are going to be moments during this story when the ratio of exciting names to actual concrete facts starts to look dangerously unbalanced. Bear with us, this is all we have:

So, as we know, Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere was recently made into a successful BBC radio drama, starring (among others) Benedict Cumberbatch and James McAvoy. The producer/director Dirk Maggs was the man charged with the responsibility for making it happen, and according to a new interview with Radio Times, his relationship with Neil was so productive they’ve decided to have another go.

And this is where it gets vague. Asked whether there was anything fun on the horizon, during a more general interview about his career, Dirk started off by saying, “Oh, yes. And it’s with Neil. And it’s Terry Pratchett” and then clammed up, politely refusing to offer any more details.

So, it could be a radio adaptation of Neil and Terry’s joint novel Good Omens, it could be an adaptation of one of Terry’s Discworld novels, or it could be something else, and if it IS something else, it’ll be the first collaboration between Neil and Terry since Good Omens, and since Good Omens was very, ah, good, this is, well, it’s good news.

Dirk is willing to talk about Neil, however. He loves Neil: “Neil and I both came from the world of comic books. He via journalism into comic books, I from radio into comic books. There was a period in the early 1990s when we were both being very creative in the comic book area. I was turning comics into radio productions where I was really beginning to try and bring the cinematic aspect to it, and Neil, of course, was writing Sandman around the late 80s, which was just a gobsmacking achievement.”

AH! So he might be interested in a Sandman adaptation then?

“Sandman is tricky, because it’s DC Comics property, and it’s very complicated. It wasn’t Neil’s invention. He updated a 1930s character called Sandman, which is a very different character, I might say. However, there are plans to do more.”

Tsk. Plans, always with the plans.

Fraser McAlpine

Fraser has been writing and broadcasting about music and popular culture for over 15 years, first at the Top of the Pops website, and most recently for the NME, Guardian and MSN. He also wrote BBC Radio 1's Chart Blog and reviews albums for BBC Radio 2.

He is Anglophenia's current resident Brit, blogging about British slang and running around the Mall taking snaps of the crowd at the Royal Wedding, as well as reigniting a childhood passion for classic Doctor Who and cramming as much music in as he can manage.

Fraser invites you to join him on Twitter: @csi_popmusic

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