Good Omens Originally Cast Its Leads Opposite

Neil Gaiman originally had the Good Omen leads of Michael Sheen as Aziraphale and David Tennant as Crowley reversed for the casting.

By Chad Langen | Published

In Amazon Prime’s original series Good Omens, Michael Sheen brilliantly portrays the angel, Aziraphale, and David Tennant masterfully plays the demon, Crowley. It’s hard to imagine things any other way. According to the show’s creator, Neil Gaiman, however, he’d originally intended for Sheen to take on the role of Crowley.

In a brief video recorded from a panel at New York Comic Con 2022 and posted to the show’s official Twitter page, Gaiman reveals that he’d visualized Sheen as the demonic character from the beginning, but while writing a scene involving Crowley walking down a church aisle, it dawned on him that Tennant would be more ideal for the part.

The first season of Good Omens premiered on Amazon Prime on March 31st, 2019, and it consists of six episodes. Although the show was originally conceived and advertised as a limited series, it was renewed for a second season in June 2021. Gaiman initially got the idea for another season in 2019, which he pitched to BBC and Amazon executives shortly after. But he didn’t begin writing it until the summer of 2020, which was in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Based on the 1990 novel of the same name by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, Good Omens stars Michael Sheen, David Tennant Adria Arjona, Miranda Richardson, Michael McKean, Jack Whitehall, Nick Offerman, Brian Cox, Jon Hamm, and Frances McDormand as the voice of God, who narrates the series.

Gaiman serves as showrunner alongside Douglas Mackinnon, who directed the first season and is also set to helm the next season. The duo also executive produces the series, which was nominated for three Primetime Emmy Awards in 2019 in the categories of Outstanding Fantasy/Sci-Fi Costumes, Outstanding Music Composition for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special (Original Dramatic Score), and Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music.

Reception for the show has been quite positive. On Rotten Tomatoes, Good Omens has an approval rating of 84% from critics based on 97 reviews, with an audience score of 90%. Those numbers, of course, are based on the first season as a whole and not individual episodes.

Despite the overwhelmingly positive buzz surrounding the series, there was an online petition created by a US religious organization back in 2019 with the goal to get Good Omens canceled. The petition received more than 20,000 signatures from folks objecting to the show’s content and criticizing its management of religious themes. Clearly, the organization’s request for the show’s cancellation was unsuccessful as Good Omens is set to return next summer.

Plot details for the forthcoming season of Good Omens are minimal at this time, but we do know Miranda Richardson will join the cast as Shax, Maggie Service as Maggie, Nina Sosanya as Nina, and Quelin Sepulveda as Muriel. Michael Sheen and David Tennant are also set to return, along with most of the cast and crew from the first installment. While you wait to see what the second season of the hit series has in store, you can stream all six episodes of the first season on Amazon Prime.