Sam Mendes Talks Preacher

Exclusive: Director on comic book movie

Empire recently sat down with Sam Mendes for a nice chat, during which we asked the Brit director about the state of play on Mendes’ next movie, a just-announced adaptation of Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon’s controversial but brilliant comic book, Preacher.

So, Sam, what’s the skinny?

“I’d love to make Preacher,” he smiles. “But there’s no script.”

But… but… the Internet told us that…

“This is a typical Variety announcement,” Mendes added. “‘Mendes to direct Preacher’ – I wish! Basically they should have written, ‘Mendes in development with Preacher’. What I’m doing is, I’ve gotta find a script. I’ve just got to get it written.”

Nevertheless, Mendes did go into some detail about his attraction to the project, which in pure thumbnail terms, is about a rebellious preacher called Jesse Custer and his quest to find God and make him accountable for crimes against humanity.

“It's brilliant, it's an incredible twisted vision,” he said of the 66-issue story. “There's so much of it you couldn't possibly fit it all into one movie. It's just about what you keep and what you leave out, and how you structure the story. But just to have that toy set again, being able to paint on a big canvas and to say ‘I am gonna do crazy crane shots and massive action sequences again because I want to,’ it's exciting..”

Understandably, given the fledgling status of the project, Mendes isn’t too keen to talk about specifics, but we did ask him about one casting issue – namely, the frequent appearances of John Wayne, whose ghost acts as a counsel to Jesse throughout.

“That's an interesting one, I wonder what the John Wayne estate's gonna say about that,” teased Mendes. “We'll see, we’ll have to get them on side…” Sam Mendes Talks Preacher
Click the image to read our beginner's guide to Preacher