Neil Gaiman Sheds Light on Why Gwendoline Christie, Not Tom Ellis, Was Cast as Lucifer in ‘The Sandman’

If you’ve been wondering why Gwendoline Christie was chosen to play Lucifer over Tom Ellis, the answer comes straight from the creator himself.

Netflix’s ‘The Sandman’ has stirred quite a bit of buzz, particularly around its casting choices. Lucifer, the ruler of Hell, has been a hot topic among fans and critics alike. In the original graphic novels, Lucifer was drawn with a somewhat androgynous and David Bowie-like look, which many feel Gwendoline Christie embodies brilliantly.

But, as always, not everyone agrees. Some have criticized the ‘gender-swap’, despite Lucifer’s androgynous character. Others were hoping for Tom Ellis, who plays the charming devil in the ‘Lucifer’ TV show (which also sprung from the pages of Neil Gaiman’s universe), to keep his role in ‘The Sandman’.

However, Gaiman recently addressed these comments in an interview with Inverse. He said, “Other grumpy people tended to be Tom Ellis fans, who were like, ‘I love Tom Ellis! Lucifer is based on him, why didn’t you cast him?’ And honestly, he’s not. He’s a lovable rogue. He wouldn’t work in ‘Sandman’ because we have to get someone that makes people scared.”

If you’re a fan of ‘Lucifer’, you know that Ellis’s version of the devil is far from terrifying. He’s the kind of devil who winds up in therapy and spends his time solving crimes with his human partner (and love interest).

Gwendoline Christie’s Lucifer, though, is a different beast. She radiates an eerie calm, and you can’t help but feel uneasy when she’s on screen. Even when she’s donning a luxurious outfit or offering a welcoming smile to Morpheus in her realm, you can sense the menace lurking beneath.

Gaiman, despite the backlash and trolling on his Twitter, stands by his casting decisions and is more than willing to discuss them. He suggests that many of these critics might not be familiar with the original comics, or they would understand that the characters’ identities and appearances are dependent on who perceives them.

If you’re yet to watch ‘The Sandman’, the first season is now streaming on Netflix. Good news for fans – it has been renewed for a second season and is in the works currently.