Good news, everybody: Sam Mendes is no longer directing Preacher. While ruthlessly pumping Neal Moritz for every single drop of info about any of his future plans (ribs for dinner this Saturday!), Collider discovered that going off to do the new Bond film has taken Mendes off the Vertigo adaptation.
This is good because, quite simply, Mendes wasn’t the guy for it. I know that’s being a bit parochial, especially after Mendes surprised us all with the very good, actually warm Away We Go, but the cowpunk sensibilities of Garth Ennis’ profane and sacrilegious comic series – about a guy wanting to hunt down God and make him answer for his crimes – seemed utterly mismatched with Mendes’ normal skillset.
I’m hoping this puts Preacher right back in development hell, where it’s been languishing for about a decade. This is not a property that lends itself to an easy adaptation, and I think the tone of this piece is so tricky that it’s reasonable to expect it gets fucked up – especially when a dude like Moritz, who isn’t the most intellectually rigorous of producers, is behind it. And when he says that the current script, by John August, is ‘probably more accessible to a broader audience right now.’ Of course Moritz could show up again in a week with an incredible announcement (I think David O Russell would be unfuckwitable on this property), but I’m filled with deep cynicism.