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Bryan Fuller talks diversity and man-eating vaginas in American Gods

Illustration for article titled Bryan Fuller talks diversity and man-eating vaginas in American Gods

Having moved on—like the rest of us someday will, God willing—from the beautiful, flaming wreck that was the now-canceled Hannibal, showrunner Bryan Fuller is well into development on his new Starz show, American Gods. Which, according to a recent interview he did with co-producer Loretta Ramos for Splitsider, is coming along pretty nicely, complete with expanded roles for female characters, and a woman with a vagina that eats a guy whole.


Of course, the man-eating vagina won’t come as a shock to readers of Neil Gaiman’s novel (or anyone who’s been following American Gods for very long, for that matter), but Fuller did get into the practicalities of filming the character of Bilquis—a.k.a. The Queen Of Sheba—and her cannibalistic genitalia. (Unsurprisingly, the answer involves CGI.) He also talked about how the role is one of a handful of female characters—including the protagonist Shadow’s wife, Laura, who’s being expanded to a major starring role alongside the mysterious Mr. Wednesday—that have been elaborated on for the series. “If there are three faces on the poster, it’s Wednesday, Shadow and Laura,” Fuller said, highlighting his efforts to turn the novel’s road-trip narrative—which mostly centers on two guys driving around America, stopping for mythology-heavy vignettes along the way—into something that can support a full television show.

Possibly even multiple seasons of a full television show, as Fuller made it clear that the show’s first season will only cover a fraction of the content in Gaiman’s book. “No, we’re only doing part of the book in the first season,” Fuller confirmed to interviewers. “The book is the Reader’s Digest version. Everything is expanded.” (He was also quick to remind canon-loving readers that Gaiman is intimately involved with the show, signing off on all the changes being made.)

By all accounts, the writing process for American Gods is in full steam at the moment, which means we may start to hear casting news start creeping out pretty soon. Fuller is keeping tight-lipped on that front, although he did note his excitement at the way the book’s roster of immigrant gods will push the show’s casting to be more diverse. “I’m always jealous of The Walking Dead for having such a diverse cast that’s so organic. We’re going to give them a run for their money, in terms of diversity,” he said. He also hinted that some of his past collaborators could make an appearance on the new series, although there’s no real clue as to who those returning actors might be.