John Constantine would have been the last character that I would think could be adapted to television but this casting news makes me a bit more hopeful.
NBC’s DC Comics adaptation Constantine has found its leading man.
Criminal Minds alum Matt Ryan is near a deal to star in the drama based on the Hellblazer graphic novels, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Constantine centers on master of the occult John Constantine, who struggles with his faith as he is haunted by the sins of his past and is suddenly thrust into the role of defending humanity from the gathering forces of darkness.
John is described as a working-class Londoner with deadpan humor who is a mysterious conman and occult detective haunted by the recent loss of a young girl’s soul. No stranger to the dark underworld that exists parallel to our own, Constantine has been studying the dark arts since he was a teenager. He’s taught himself spells, rituals, curses and conjuring, but the one person he most wishes to see — his mother, who died giving birth to him — remains out of reach, at least so far. When Liv, the daughter of a late friend, is targeted by demons, Constantine steps in to save her and the two form an alliance.
Dexter’s Daniel Cerone will pen the script with Batman Begins’ David Goyer attached to executive produce. Neill Marshall (Game of Thrones) will direct the pilot for the Warner Bros. Television drama.
Ryan’s credits include Criminal Minds and its spinoff, Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior, as well as The Tudors and features Flypaper and Layer Cake. He’s repped by WME and Julian Belfrage Associates in the U.K.
NBC has had a surprisingly good track record with genre shows and is doing especially well with Dracula as well as other shows that are a bit outside the norm. If they take the material seriously and stay true to the character, Constantine may do well after all.