NBC Picks Up New ‘Constantine’ TV Series Helmed By Daniel Cerone And David S. Goyer
It's unclear just which version of the character might manifest, but John Constantine is headed for TV at NBC. Deadline reports that a Constantine drama has sold to NBC with penalty, meaning that if the pilot doesn’t make it to the small screen, the network will have to shell out a pretty penny to none other than writer/executive producers Daniel Cerone (The Mentalist) and David S. Goyer, known in these parts as the co-writer of Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Man of Steel, the upcoming Batman vs. Superman.
Deadline describes the upcoming TV version of Constantine as "an enigmatic and irreverent con man-turned-reluctant supernatural detective who is thrust into the role of defending us against dark forces from beyond," which seems more or less fitting with the character's comic book personality.
Created by Alan Moore, Steve Bissette and Jamie Delano, John Constantine debuted in DC's The Saga Of The Swamp Thing in 1985, where he became a recurring character before getting his own standalone series, Hellblazer, in 1988. The series ran for 25 years -- 20 as part of DC's mature readers imprint Vertigo -- before its 300th and final issue was released this past March and a more PG-13 version of the character debuted in DC's rebooted "New 52" continuity.
What we don't know, and what might make a big difference to current Constantine fans, is whether the character will retain his British background, hugely cynical outlook, penchant for abusing substances like alcohol, and potent potty mouth on an NBC TV series. The 2005 Constantine movie (AND video game tie-in!) starring Keanu Reeves presented an American version of the character who, while damaged and moody, bore less resemblance to the comic book source material than most fans would have liked. He... also fought demons with a holy water shotgun.
Constantine could be poised to return to the big screen again, too, since as of January Hellboy and Pacific Rim director and current co-writer of Dark Horse’s The Strain Guillermo del Toro was working on an outline for a Justice League Dark-style Dark Universe movie, which could possibly star Constantine, Swamp Thing, The Demon Etrigan, Deadman, The Spectre, and Zatanna.
Warner Bros. TV is working with a number of networks with The Flash spinning out of Arrow on the CW, a Commissioner Gordon origin story series being developed at Fox and now Constantine on NBC.