But he also talked about the TV/film adaptation of his work, specifically the linked novels Anansi Boys and American Gods.
He touched upon not selling Anansi Boys to one producer after they said they would recast characters racially as “black people don’t like fantasy.” Neil didn’t do the deal.
This will not be an issue with American Gods currently being made by Starz and Bryan Fuller where he told them
“You can absolutely do the novel, but the racial breakdown in the novel stays. Shadow, our hero, is mixed race, I want you to find a mixed race actor. All of the characters represent America and represent the glorious messed up, mixed up, wonderfulness of America and that I want in there. We got no argument from the TV companies, no argument from the network no argument from Bryan and his guys.
“And it’s been wonderful for me getting sent audition tapes from all of these fantastic actors and going, you’re brilliant and one of you is going to be the lead and that will be great and I love the fact that we are opening things up a little bit. That for me is huge and important. Diversity in all things.
“The best thing about people is we’re this magnificently different bunch. Look around you. There’s no one else even vaguely like you in this room, for many of you there’s nobody with the same colour hair.”
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