TVLine is reporting that NBC has found the person to play infamous mad man Hannibal Lecter. Taking on the role made famous by Sir Anthony Hopkins is Danish thespian Mads Mikkelsen, perhaps best known for his role as Bond villain Le Chiffre in Quantum of Solace and Casino Royale. Mikkelsen joins the already announced Hugh Dancy in the cast for the project, which was ordered straight to series this past February.
Developed by Bryan Fuller (Pushing Daisies, Dead Like Me), Hannibal will be documenting the relationship between Lecter and Special Agent Will Graham (Dancy), two men that would antagonize one another for years to come; the adaptation of the Red Dragon novels from Thomas Harris will be bringing Special Agent Jack Crawford to the small screen, as well as doing gender flips (Dr. Alan Bloom becomes Dr. Alana Bloom) and occupation tweaks (Freddy Lounds becomes tabloid blogger Fredricka Lounds) along the way.
Casting for Bloom, Lounds, and Crawford is still ongoing and will be announced at a later date.
This past April, Fuller spoke to Entertainment Weekly about Hannibal, calling the character’s disposition “cheery” and announcing the show will take on a cable model of 13 episode seasons. Fuller reportedly has a seven-season arc in mind, but he may have to balance Hannibal with Mockingbird Lane, another NBC pilot of his currently in the running for a midseason placement.
Mikkelsen has some television experience to fall back on, having starred in the Danish comedy series Julie as well as police drama Unit 1. He currently has three films in pre-production, including Thor 2, in addition to one in post and one currently filming. The actor can next be seen in The Hunt, which was recently featured at Cannes.
Hannibal premieres sometime midseason.
What do you think about the casting of Hannibal? Can Mikkelsen make the part his own? Do you think you’ll be watching Hannibal when it debuts?