- (Photo: Reuters/Mario Anzuoni)
The AMC network has announced its plans to begin production on its new series "Preacher," adapted from the 1990s comic series by the same name that follows the adventures of a former reverend in his search to find God, who has abandoned his responsibilities as master of the universe.
The new television series will be produced by Sam Catlin, who also did production work for the hit AMC drama "Breaking Bad," and Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg from "This is the End" will work as executive producers and writers of the show's pilot draft. The original comic version of the storyline was created by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon with Vertigo comics, an imprint of DC comics, in the 1990s.
Rogen and Goldberg released a statement expressing their excitement at finally producing a show they have worked seven years to have picked up by a network. "This is amazing! We've tried for seven years to work on 'Preacher' and we're so psyched AMC is finally letting us. It is our favorite comic of all time, and we're going to do everything we can to do it right. Humperdoo!"
Various producers from the Original Films company, including Neal Moritz, Vivian Cannon, Ori Marmur, Ken Levin and Jason Netter, will also help in the show's executive production. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the new "Preacher" script landed at AMC after a highly competitive bidding situation among multiple television networks.
"This is a great piece of material for AMC, and we're thrilled to begin working with the creative team behind it to make another iconic AMC series," Joel Stillerman, AMC's executive vice president of original programming, production and digital content, said in a statement.
The show follows the adventures of Texas Reverend Jesse Custer, who loses his faith and then goes on a manhunt for God, who has forsaken his duties as master of the universe. Jesse proves to be the only person capable of tracking God down, and he embarks on his adventure with his ex-girlfriend, an affable vampire who has a penchant for beer. Jesse and his girlfriend are also being hunted by a villain named the Saint of Killers who wants to murder Jesse.
"Preacher" has reportedly had several near-brushes with becoming a motion picture, including being temporarily picked up by The Weinstein Co. and Columbia Pictures only to be dropped due to budgetary concerns or change of management.
Ennis said in a lengthy statement that he and fellow writer Dillon are pleased that their comic series was eventually set for a television series rather than a motion picture. "Steve Dillon and I are very happy to see 'Preacher' being developed for TV, which seems a much more natural home for the story than a two-hour movie. Between them, Sony TV and AMC have brought viewers two of my favorite shows with 'Breaking Bad' and 'Mad Men,' and it's exactly that kind of creative commitment and courage that 'Preacher' needs."
"Obviously it's taken a while, but Ken Levin along with Neal Moritz and his team refused to give up, long after the point when I myself grew skeptical, and their unrelenting enthusiasm for the project has gotten us where we need to be. I'm particularly impressed that Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg and Sam Catlin understand 'Preacher' fully – meaning they get it for what it is, not some vague approximation. All in all, it looks like 'Preacher' can now be brought to TV in a way that I'd previously not have thought possible, and I very much appreciate that Steve and I have been included in the conversation in the way that we have."