‘Lucifer’ First Look: Tom Ellis Previews the Devil’s Unlikely Hobby

Fox’s “Lucifer” premieres on January 25 after the timeslot debut of “The X-Files,” and the comic book-inspired drama aims to present a devil less interested in fire and brimstone and more concerned with humanity’s foibles — and their taste in music.

Based on the DC Comics character who first appeared in Neil Gaiman’s “Sandman” series (and later earned his own ongoing spinoff comic written by Mike Carey), the live-action iteration of Lucifer Morningstar is portrayed by Welsh actor Tom Ellis, who recently told Variety that he strove to make the character as grounded as possible.

“I didn’t want to make him arch in any way. I just felt like the more human I could make him, the more accessible it would be to people as well,” he noted. “That was made easier by the fact that it’s so funny with his witticisms, and his take on life and on humans is quite funny. He views them as lab rats, I suppose, to work out what it is that’s going on for him while he’s going through this transition from Hell onto Earth.”

We first meet Lucifer after he’s abandoned his post in Hell to embark on a voyage of self-discovery in Los Angeles, where he has opened a nightclub and soon inserts himself into an LAPD murder investigation, much to the disapproval of Detective Chloe Decker (Lauren German), his begrudging partner.

As illustrated in Variety‘s exclusive video below, Lucifer has an enduring love of music, which will manifest in an upcoming episode, featuring a piano duel with Tony Award-nominated actor Colman Domingo, who plays a priest.

“Music is a big part of the show, [through] the soundtrack, but also Lucifer’s love of music and appreciation of musical talent is a big theme within the initial pilot and something we continue throughout the series, because he owns this piano bar in Los Angeles,” Ellis told Variety.

While the show has deviated from the overarching plot of the comics on which it’s based, Ellis noted that the series “was never set out to be an exact replica of that … it’s found its own tone and it’s not constricted by having to be a comic book world, and what I really love about it is, it’s about making a comic book-esque character come into the world and experiencing the real world and not the comic book world. It found its own voice pretty quickly, and we took it to Comic-Con last year, and it was really pleasing to see people’s reaction to it. I think people who’ve seen the pilot have been pleasantly surprised about one, how funny it is, and two, how it’s very different from what they thought it was going to be. It’s nice to surprise people.”

Check out Ellis’ intro to the series, courtesy of DC Comics’ All Access, below.

“Lucifer” premieres Monday, January 25 at 9 p.m. on Fox.

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