One point that has been in question about NBC’s upcoming TV series adaptation of the “Constantine” graphic novels has been the character’s chain smoking. U.S. network television has little problem showcasing gore and violence, but smoking is an absolute no-no these days.
Filmmaker Neil Marshall directed the series’ pilot and serves as an executive producer, and he was recently asks by Collider about whether or not the character of John Constantine (Matt Ryan) will be allowed to smoke in the series. The answer is disappointing:
“No we’re not. It’s the one thing, a compromise I guess. On network it’s the one thing you can’t smoke on network. That’s one of his character traits. We’re working around that. We’re trying to get aspects of it in there as much as possible. We’ll see.”
Marshall says that despite that decision, one he’s as frustrated with as the rest of us, NBC won’t hold back in other areas such as the inherent dark nature of the material:
“Hannibal is on NBC, and that’s pretty dark and disturbing. Whatever the regulations are, you can be as dark and disturbing as you want and we’re going to go in that direction. The intention is to be as dark and scary as possible with the show. And that was our whole kind of plan going in, to make it scary. So we’re going to explore all kinds of things. But the smoking is very frustrating. Who knows where it will go; where the story will go; where the character will go? There’s still lots of options.”