During his presentation at this year’s Television Critics Association press junket, Starz CEO Chris Albrecht was open about the network’s desire to keep the success it saw with the first season of American Gods moving forward as it looks to the future. Ideally, Albrecht said, American Gods would go on indefinitely.
After being stuck in development hell for what seemed like ages before it finally found a home on Starz, American Gods became a surprise ratings hit for the network when it premiered early this year to stellar reviews. Given how little of Neil Gaiman’s novel the first season actually made it through, it’s clear that Starz always planned on stretching the source material out in order to give its ensemble of characters space to breathe. According to Albrecht, though, we may be in for more American Gods than anyone initially expected.
“We are certainly on board for as long as the show makes sense for Starz. We don’t see an end in sight. It is a difficult show to do and wrangle, so I don’t know when the next season will be on the air, but as soon as possible.”
Albrecht went on to point out that the ultimate vision for American Gods is the result of a collaborative effort between Starz, its partner Freemantle, and Gaiman’s creative input, which can be interpreted in a couple of ways in terms of what we might see in the future.
American Gods’ first season covered about 15-20% of the book while adding in significant plot elements involving characters like Laura, Salim, and Mad Sweeney that were new. If the show were to go on for more than five or so seasons, it’s more than plausible that Starz might consider dipping into Anansi Boys, Gaiman’s 2005 spinoff novel about Anansi’s family, or Monarch of the Glen, a 2006 novella detailing Shadow Moon’s life after the events of American Gods.
Starz will have to get a little creative if it wants to achieve its goal of keeping American Gods going in perpetuity considering that Neil Gaiman, while open to it at some point in the future, has no plans to write a sequel to the book any time soon.