It seems Marvel's success at multiplexes, coupled with The Walking Dead's success on cable television, is encouraging a lot of US studios execs to take a chance on network TV. Arrow's going to 'back-door pilot' a Flash spin-off this year, Fox have just ordered a crime drama called Gotham (taking place in Batman's home town), and now NBC have ordered a pilot of Constantine from David Goyer (Batman Begins, Man of Steel).
For the uninitiated, John Constantine is a chain-smoking English expert of the occult, created by graphic novel maestro Alan Moore as a supporting character in a 1985 issue of Swamp Thing. The blonde-haired magician proved popular enough to headline his own hit comic-book series, Hellblazer, which was loosely adapted into a 2005 movie starring Keanu Reeves—which upset purists because of the character's Americanisation and the setting's move to Los Angeles.
Constantine is a better fit for television, but one assumes this project at NBC will be a small-screen version of Francis Lawrence's 2005 movie. I certainly don't imagine they'll be filming on location in the UK, using an actor with a heavy Scouse accent. Although maybe they'll appease the existing fanbase by casting someone who's at least English, seeing how popular Johnny Lee Miller is on Elementary? There's also hope for a decent translation in terms of tone, considering NBC are the 'mainstream network' that gave us the extremely cable-like drama Hannibal. Constantine needs to take place in a world that's similarly bleak-yet-beautiful.
David Goyer's output is hit-and-miss (Blade Trinity, Da Vinci's Demons), but he tends to work better alongside more talented people (The Dark Knight), so it's good to hear this series is being co-produced by Daniel Cerone (The Mentalist)--who also worked on Dexter's first two seasons. Goyer and Cerone working together on a show NBC are happy to see go down a less mainstream avenue, like Hannibal, actually might work... but it still feels like a better fit as a True Blood replacement for HBO...