A memorial event was recently held in England to note the first anniversary of beloved fantasy satirist Terry Pratchett’s death. A lot of news came out of the event, including a film adaptation of the Discworld novel Mort and another film based on Wee Free Men being helmed by Rhianna Pratchett, the late author’s daughter and writer of the recently-rebooted Tomb Raider series.
But perhaps the most exciting news is that Good Omens, the pre-apocalyptic comedy Pratchett co-penned alongside Neil Gaiman, is being adapted as a six-part TV miniseries – and Gaiman himself is personally overseeing the adaptation.
It’s a huge change of heart for the American Gods author. Previously, Gaiman had told Pratchett’s assistant Rob Wilkins that he would not be involved in an adaptation:
Terry and I had a deal that we would only work on Good Omens things together. Everything that was ever written – bookmarks and tiny little things – we would always collaborate, everything was a collaboration.
However Gaiman changed his mind when he was presented with a letter, written by Pratchett, intended to be read after his death.
The letter asked Gaiman to write the adaptation alone, with his blessing. Gaiman shared this with the crowd at the memorial event, recalling, “At that point, I think I said, ‘You bastard, yes.'”
It’s good news for fans of Good Omens, who have been clamoring for a visual adaptation of the book more or less since it was first published in 1990, though BBC Radio did a marvelous adaptation a couple of years ago starring Guardians of the Galaxy actor Peter Serafinowicz and Mark Heap of Green Wing and The World’s End. Terry Gilliam famously wanted to adapt the book with Robin Williams and Johnny Depp in the lead roles, but that never materialized. A TV adaptation was announced way back in 2011, but news has been scant since then. This announcement has reinvigorated things. It’s only a shame Pratchett won’t get to see it himself.
Other Pratchett projects, including the long-talked-about TV series following the Ankh-Morpork City Watch and a fan-produced adaptation of the short Discworld story Troll Bridge, were revealed to still be in the works. All in all, quite a lot of good news coming out of an event commemorating the death of one of the greatest fantasy authors and satirists of the 20th century.