In the Vertigo/DC comic book Hellblazer, featuring the iconic John Constantine, the character was a heavy cigarette smoker who had lung cancer. When NBC picked up the Constantine TV series, many fans wondered if the title character, played by Matt Ryan, would smoke. During a recent interview at the Saturn Awards, Neil Marshall, who directed the pilot episode, revealed that Constantine will be a non-smoker, but they are trying to get aspects of his smoking habit into the show without actually showing it.
"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."
When asked if the character still has lung cancer like in the comics, the director said that there is no mention of cancer in the pilot, but he doesn't know where the story is going after that.
"I have no idea where the story is going to go beyond the pilot, so I can't answer that one."
"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."
He also confirmed that the series will feature a number of creature effects including "humanoid demons" and other creatures.
"You want a mix, you know? There will be humanoid demons and creatures."