JH Williams III Talks SANDMAN Prequel
At Comic Con this year many Neil Gaiman and Sandman fans heard the announcement they had been waiting on for years, a Sandman prequel was in the works to coincide with the 25th anniversary . Unlike DC’s Before Watchmen, the original creator is on board AND it is something he had wanted to do for a while. It was also announced that JH Williams III would be the artist for the new miniseries. We finally find out what Morpheus was doing before issue #1. As a side note, Williams said after Comic Con that the cover was displayed wrong. The way you see it above is the way it is supposed to be viewed.
The Batwoman artist spoke with CBR about the project. Williams said that his involvement with Vertigo and Gaiman on the prequel will not have an affect on his work with Batwoman. Williams style has won him several awards, but he might change things up slightly for Sandman.
I am always looking for ways to try out new things. Neil knows that and he’s going to try and push me into some stuff that we may not have seen before in terms of types of story that I’ve told in the past.
It’s clearly going to be “Sandman,” so it’s going to be unlike anything I’ve drawn previously. The closest thing might be “Promethea” but even that book feels dramatically different from “Sandman.” It’s definitely going to bring out some different things from me. It should be pretty cool. When you look at the promo piece that was done, you clearly see that there are some different things going on there than stuff I’ve done in the past, even though other things I’ve done in the past have a pretty psychedelic aspect to it.
Gaiman and Williams have come close to working together before, but never connected until now. Williams talks about how he ended up with the gig:
I’ve never had the chance to work with Neil before. He’s always been someone I’ve wanted to work with, but I honestly never thought that I would get the opportunity. When he came and did those two issues of “Batman” in the middle of Grant Morrison’s run a short while ago, I was very jealous I wasn’t able to draw that. Again, it’s always something I’ve wanted to do, but he hasn’t been doing much comic stuff lately, so I thought I’d missed my chance.
Then, just less than a year ago, I got an email from [Vertigo Executive Editor] Karen Berger, who I’ve been talking with for quite a few years. She’s wanted me to do more stuff for Vertigo since I did that whole series of covers for them on “Crossing Midnight,” and ever since then, we’ve been wanting to do a bigger project together. Karen sent me an email outlining this “Sandman” project — and how could I say “no” to that? [Laughs] That’s how I got involved. Neil and I spoke shortly after that, and he seemed very, very pleased that I said, “yes.”
Williams admitted he knew the announcement would have a big response, but he was pleased to hear just how happy and excited fans were that the two would be working on the project. The inevitable comparisons to Before Watchmen will be made, and Williams touches on how Sandman will differ:
I don’t think we’re going to get any backlash. There may be some from some long-time “Sandman” fans that may have trepidations because it’s been so long, but at the same time, like you said, it is Neil and it is his vision and everyone well knows, because he said it in the announcement, this is a story he’s always wanted to tell and has never had the chance to do so.
It’s probably come up in past interviews with him about “Sandman” over the years, too, so I am sure a lot of “Sandman” fans have been aware that he’s wanted to tell this story for some time. I honestly don’t see us having any pushback from people. I think, just by the overall feel I’ve been getting from fans already, people just have total enthusiasm for this. We’re just nervous and hopeful that when they see it, they say, “This is what we were hoping it would be.”
Williams was a huge fan of the original run and looks forward to starting. He said that he won’t look back at other artists interpretations of Morpheus so he won’t be too heavily influenced. He couldn’t say anything about the story, but he did say that it did feature one of the “most brilliant opening scenes” he had ever read for the first chapter of a comic. You can read the interview in its entirety on CBR by clicking here.
The miniseries is scheduled to begin November of 2013. What do you think Gaiman, Sandman, and/or Williams fans? Does this set easier with you than Before Watchmen? Are you as excited as Williams is?
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Source : ComicBookResources