Hell, it seems, is home to some familiar faces.
Audible revealed today that The Sandman: Act II, the follow-up to last year’s New York Times bestselling audio production of Neil Gaiman’s iconic fantasy comic, will be released on September 22, 2021. Once again adapted and directed by the award-winning Dirk Maggs, The Sandman’s next chapter will also be co-executive produced and creative directed by Neil Gaiman, who will return as the production’s narrator. Alongside him will be Act I cast members James McAvoy in the title role as Dream, Kat Dennings as Death, Michael Sheen as Lucifer and Andy Serkis as Matthew the Raven.
However, The Sandman: Act II will take Morpheus to new corners of reality, bringing dozens of new characters to listeners for the first time as well as new performers to bring those characters to life. Joining the cast for Act II will be Jeffrey Wright as Destiny, Regé-Jean Page as Orpheus, Brian Cox as Augustus, Emma Corrin as Thessaly, John Lithgow as Emperor Joshua Norton, David Tennant as Loki, Bill Nighy as Odin, Kristen Schaal as Delirium, Kevin Smith as Merv Pumpkinhead, Bebe Neuwirth as Bast, Miriam Margolyes as Despair, Arthur Darvill as William Shakespeare, Joanna Lumley as Lady Johnanna Constantine, Niamh Walsh as Nuala, Aidan Turner, Adrian Lester, Ray Porter and many more. It’s an impressive collection of talent, but then again, so is the material. The Sandman: Act II will adapt volume four of the graphic novel series, Season of Mists, and volume five, A Game of You. It will also take on the experimental “Distant Mirrors” quartet and “Convergence” trio from The Sandman’s sixth volume, Fables & Reflections.
Season of Mists remains one of the more popular storylines from the influential Vertigo comic series, taking Morpheus back to hell as Lucifer abdicates his role as its ruler and leaves Morpheus with the keys to the underworld. Along with the demons and monstrosities one would expect to confront in hell, Lucifer’s decision attracts dozens of colorful would-be contenders for the now-vacant throne, providing plenty of opportunities for performers to stretch their vocal stylings.
Audible’s debut installment of The Sandman was both critically and commercially well received. Released July 15, 2020, The Sandman broke Audible’s record for pre-orders and quickly became the bestselling Audible Original in the company’s history, holding the #1 spot on the New York Times Bestseller Audio Fiction list in July 2020 and August 2020.
However, if you haven’t yet heard it, there’s never been a better time. To prepare listeners for the release of Act II, fans in the United States can listen to the first installment of The Sandman for free through October 22, 2021. The entire debut production can be downloaded free-of-charge by Audible members or the first three chapters can be streamed on all Amazon Music tiers. Additionally, The Sandman can be experienced in its entirety through Alexa-enabled devices from August 3rd-31st by saying, “Alexa, read The Sandman.”
Whether you’re brand new to the world of The Sandman or binged the audio production the first day it dropped, it’s time to put on your headphones, find a nice place to sit and get comfortable.
You have some dreaming to do.