Tuesday, 22 December 2009

The world still isn't ready for Preacher

Preacher is in my mind one of the best comics ever written, and dare I say should sit pretty high on the all time literature list too. To sum the series up in a brief synopsis wouldn't do it justice, so you'll have to trawl the inter-webs if you want the tale in a nutshell, but I'd serious recommend going out and at least picking up the 'Gone To Texas' graphic novel.

HBO were allegedly working on the series, which frankly had me extremely excited, although the excitement was based entirely on my love of Band Of Brothers and The Wire. After 4 years of sitting on the franchise HBO deemed the subject matter of Preacher too controversial and axed the production. Currently John August (Titan AE, Charlies Angels, Corpse Bride) is working on a screenplay for Sony Pictures. But this is just one of many many other attempts at bringing the series from the page to the screen, all previous attempts have failed, and I have no doubt that this one will as well.

Although Preacher is a fantastic comic, it is in many ways an impossible task to bring it to a broader movie going (or indeed tv going) audience. The structure is there and the script is practically already written, needing only to be lifted off of the page. However the subject matter is what leaves this project in design purgatory, with studios understandably cautious to release a film that has the potential to kick up such a strong backlash from religious communities. The problem is that people can take creative work as personal attacks, for example when The DaVinci Code was released people were freaking out at the blasphemy of the entire concept, without taking into account that no-one other than themselves were proclaiming this as a factual reference book. The fires were only further fuelled when the movie adaptation was released, so it is no wonder that studios are cautious as to what they are seen to support.

Until the world is ready to accept works of fiction as works of fiction and nothing more then Preacher will have to remain a comic, not that this is a bad thing of course.

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