Lucifer: Why was Lucifer recast in The Sandman adaptation?

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Netflix has confirmed its brand-new series The Sandman has begun filming and confirmed most of the show’s cast. This will be an adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s comic book series The Sandman and will see the return of Lucifer Morningstar. However, he will not be played by Lucifer actor Tom Ellis – here’s why Ellis is not reprising his part.

Why was Lucifer replaced in The Sandman adaptation?

Lucifer was first created by Gaiman in his The Sandman comics.

FOX, and later Netflix, have loosely adapted these stories into the hit series Lucifer.

This sees Ellis play the charming devil who trades Hell for Los Angeles and begins solving crime.

Now Netflix is creating a new adaptation based on The Sandman comics, which began filming in October.

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The streaming platform recently confirmed the cast of the show and announced Lucifer would be played by a new actor.

Instead of Ellis, Game of Thrones star Gwendoline Christie will be taking on the role.

This will have left some to wonder why Ellis was not continuing to play the part.

Posting on his Tumblr, author Gaiman clarified why exactly this was in a response to fan questions.

He wrote: “The theology and cosmogony of Lucifer is a long way from Sandman’s.

“It’s ‘inspired by’ Sandman, but you can’t easily retrofit the Lucifer version to get back to Sandman, if you see what I mean.

“It seemed easier and more fun to have the Sandman version of Lucifer be, well, much closer to the Sandman version of Lucifer.”

As fans will know, the long-running series Lucifer is very loosely inspired by the comic book series.


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The show has made several differences to the original story, including changing the devil’s appearance and creating many new characters.

Therefore, if The Sandman will be a more faithful adaptation, it makes sense why they decided to go in a different direction.

As well as this, Ellis has been open in interviews about his decision to leave the role behind when the final sixth season is released.

The actor addressed this on the Kings of Con: The Podcast back in 2020.

Speaking about leaving the part behind, he said: “Six seasons of the show is a real achievement.

“It’s been a huge emotional journey and I don’t think I want to do any more.

“I know I don’t want to do any more. Mainly because I wanna know that we’re ending and because I’ve had such a great time.

“I think it’s only fitting that we have a proper ending to the show.”

Described as a new dark fantasy series, The Sandman will be launching on Netflix within the next few years.

Alongside Christie, the show has also announced Tom Sturridge will play Dream and Charles Dance will be Roderick Burgess.

Boyd Holbrook, Vivienne Acheampong, Asim Chaudhry and Sanjeev Bhaskar complete the confirmed cast so far.

Lucifer season 5, part 1 is available on Netflix now.

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