Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen, best known for playing Le Chiffre in Casino Royale, has landed the title role in NBC’s new thriller Hannibal, TVLine reports.
Developed by Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller, the series fleshes out the backstory in Thomas Harris’ 1981 novel Red Dragon, exploring the relationship between brilliant young psychiatrist Hannibal Lecter and FBI profiler Will Graham (played by Hugh Dancy) as they solve crimes together. NBC has already committed to a 13-episode first-season order.
“There is a cheery disposition to our Hannibal. He’s not being telegraphed as a villain,” Fuller said recently. “If the audience didn’t know who he was, they wouldn’t see him coming. What we have is Alfred Hitchcock’s principle of suspense — show the audience the bomb under the table and let them sweat when it’s going to go boom. So the audience knows who Hannibal is so we don’t have to overplay his villainy. We get to subvert his legacy and give the audience twists and turns.”
Mikkelsen, who won the best actor award at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival for his role in the Danish drama The Hunt, was recently cast as an unnamed villain in Marvel’s Thor 2.