Neil Gaiman on Taking Good Omens from Book to Screen [Video]
Prepare thyself, something wickedly good this way comes. Best-selling author Neil Gaiman took to the SXSW stage for a conversation with writer and actress Kirsten Vangsness about his upcoming mini-series adaptation of Good Omens.
Based on the satirical novel Gaiman co-authored with Terry Pratchett, Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch, the story centers around a fussy angel, Aziraphale (Michael Sheen), and the loose-living demon, Crowley (David Tennant), as they join forces to prevent the coming of the Apocalypse. The release date is nigh for the new six-episode series coming to Amazon Prime Video on May 31.
During the Featured Session, Gaiman reflected on collaborating with Terry Pratchett and the playful duel of literary wits that unfolded as they passed chapters back and forth, ultimately resulting in a world-renowned fantasy novel. "When you are writing you normally don't have an audience," said Gaiman. "The magical thing for me and for Terry about writing Good Omens is we had an audience. His audience was me and mine was him."
"Good Omens in a lot of ways was me and Terry [Pratchett] trying to talk about what it means to be human."
Before Pratchett's death in 2015, Gaiman recalled receiving a message from him about the destiny of Good Omens which read, "You have to do this...you're the only person who has the same understanding of and passion for the old girl." Gaiman described how the work transformed into a "mad passion project" and throughout the adaptation journey he unflinchingly held onto Pratchett's vision for Good Omens.
From book to screen to the streets of Austin, the series was brought to life during SXSW with roaming fallen angels and live musical performances in Prime Video's Garden of Earthly Delights as well as a mid-Featured Session interruption from The Chattering Order of St. Beryl with their chorus of unholy a cappella.
"The power of being a writer is a really peculiar and wonderful thing."
Before embarking into the world of Good Omens, watch the entire Featured Session with Neil Gaiman to take a deeper dive into Gaiman's writing insights and find out what's next.
Enjoy a bonus earthly delight below – photo highlights from Good Omens' omnipresence at SXSW 2019 including SXSW Film's Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate SXSW Event red carpet and Q&A with Neil Gaiman, Douglas Mackinnon, Michael Sheen, David Tennant, and Jon Hamm.
2019 SXSW Featured Speaker, Neil Gaiman – Photo by Alexa Gonzalez Wagner