One of the best written and best acted dramas currently on network (or any) television is Hannibal, from show creator Bryan Fuller. Based on the characters from Thomas Harris’ classic novels, the series follows the unsettling relationship between psychiatrist-turned-serial-killer Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) and gifted criminal profiler Will Graham (Hugh Dancy).
During this recent exclusive interview with Collider, executive producer/writer Bryan Fuller talked about how the series came about, how he gauges the level of violence on the show, how he ended up with Dancy, Mikkelsen and Laurence Fishburne as his lead actors, how fascinating the character relationships are, that knowing the eventual destination of these characters is a huge gift, when Hannibal Lecter’s famous face mask could appear, how the Red Dragon story would come into play in Season 4, adding some female characters to the mix, how they decide what meals Dr. Lecter will prepare and serve, future romantic relationships for the serial killer, and what Gillian Anderson brings to the show. He also talked about the possibility of a Kickstarter campaign for a Pushing Daisies movie. Check out what he had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.
First of all, if you haven’t watched the clips from Hannibal‘s unaired fourth episode “œuf” do so now because I am going to talk about it along with “Coquilles.” What I found so interesting about NBC’s “cannibalized” version (their pun!) of that controversial fourth episode is that by eliminating the Case of the Week, Hannibal turned into a really beautifully meditative character study. It didn’t flow particularly smoothly (what a surprise since it was chopped up), but at the same time it was really hypnotic. With all of the therapy sessions, it kind of reminded me of HBO’s In Treatment, plus hallucinations and eating humans. While I also enjoyed “Coquilles,” the Case of the Week, which I thought was pretty weak, distracted from the better character moments. Hit the jump for why I’m so excited I figured out what to do with that œ character …
Last week it was announced that NBC would be pulling its new crime drama Hannibal‘s upcoming fourth episode “œuf” in the wake of the Boston Marathon tragedy. The episode’s Case of the Week was about children killing other children — something that had series creator Bryan Fuller asking to have it pulled completely while the series was still in production, after the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary. The hesitation about the episode was already clear, as it didn’t appear in press packs for the series (the episode order of the press screeners went 1, 2, 3, 5, 6).
While the idea to cut the episode has been universally supported, Fuller wanted to make sure that fans were able to keep up with the character building in the episode that was separate from the crime, especially after last week’s surprising ending. So NBC “cannibalized” the episode into webisodes for viewers, and put them online. Hit the jump for the clips.
The new drama series Hannibal premiered last night on NBC, but in case you missed the debut of one of the most promising new dramas from the network in God-knows-when, the entire episode has now been made available online. From Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller, the show is an adaptation of the Thomas Harris series of novels featuring the Hannibal Lecter character, as we follow the early relationship between the renowned psychiatrist Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) and his patient, a young FBI criminal profiler named Will Graham (Hugh Dancy), who is haunted by his ability to empathize with serial killers.
The pilot—which is brilliantly directed by 30 Days of Night helmer David Slade—is excellent, and I was incredibly pleased to see a series that’s confident enough to use silence and mood to create an atmosphere rather than flashy editing and fast-moving cameras to “keep your attention.” The performances by Dancy, Mikkelsen, and Laurence Fishbourne are fantastic, and I’m really looking forward to seeing how the rest of the season plays out. Hit the jump to watch the pilot, click here to read our review of the show’s first two episodes, and click here for Allison’s pilot recap.
Hannibal Lecter has undergone many a different iteration – from the coolly cerebral Brian Cox to the scarily menacing Anthony Hopkins to the more toothless anti-hero Hopkins played up in the sequels to whatever-the-hell Hannibal Rising was supposed to be. It’s a character that has unfortunately become watered down with each new version presented. It’s remarkable now that a network television channel would base an entire series around a cannibal serial killer – but it speaks to just how defanged the character has become. However the new Hannibal as presented in Bryan Fuller’s upcoming show (based on the first two episodes previewed) presents dare-I-say-it the most unsettling characterization of Hannibal yet. Gone are any of the affectations of an Anthony Hopkins, instead replaced by pure detached malevolence. For the full review, hit the jump.
A full-length international trailer for NBC’s upcoming series Hannibal has been released online, and it’s pretty great. The show comes from Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller and explores the early relationship between the renowned psychiatrist Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) and his patient, a young FBI criminal profiler named Will Graham (Hugh Dancy), who is haunted by his ability to empathize with serial killers. This trailer does a great job of setting up the plot for the series, and I’m interested to see how heavy the show’s procedural aspect is. If nothing else, the character interactions look to be incredibly entertaining.
Fuller has long-term plans for the show—which is based on Thomas Harris’ series of novels—as he initially pitched a seven-season arc to NBC that includes dynamic changes throughout the series run (ie. Lecter will be outed as a serial killer long before the show ends). Hit the jump to watch the trailer. Hannibal also stars Laurence Fishbourne and premieres on NBC on April 4th at 10pm.
The first teaser trailer for Bryan Fuller’s Hannibal is now available. The new NBC series centers on the titular serial killer (Mads Mikkelsen) and FBI profiler Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) who relies on Dr. Lecter’s singular expertise to help him solve his cases. The show “explores the early relationship between the renowned psychiatrist and his patient, a young FBI criminal profiler, who is haunted by his ability to empathize with serial killers.” Also starring Laurence Fishburne and Caroline Dhavernas, Hannibal premieres on Thursday, April 4th at 10pm. Hit the jump to watch the first teaser trailer.
Although the team up of director Bryan Singer and writer Bryan Fuller managed to bring The Munsters back to life in this year’s Halloween special Mockingbird Lane, the potential series didn’t spark with the network. Starring Jerry O’Connell, Portia de Rossi, Eddie Izzard, Charity Wakefield and Mason Cook, the show featured the exploits of an abnormal family and their attempts to fit in (or not) to everyday society. Mockingbird Lane was done with Fuller’s usual flair, as Pushing Daisies, Dead Like Me and Wonderfalls fans can attest to, but like those projects, this one is also dead. Hit the jump to read what Fuller said about Mockingbird Lane, along with the first few minutes of the TV special.
Early this year, a curious pairing popped up in the form of director Tim Burton and Robert Downey Jr. possibly teaming up on a new take on Pinocchio. Downey Jr. subsequently spoke enthusiastically about the prospect, and now we have an update on the Warner Bros. project as Heat Vision reports that Stardust and X-Men: First Class co-writer Jane Goldman has been brought on to rewrite the script. It’s a bit of a curious move as Pushing Daisies mastermind Bryan Fuller penned the intial draft, but I guess his script wasn’t up to snuff for the duo.
The new take on the classic story would find Downey Jr. playing Geppetto, the woodcarver responsible for creating the puppet boy Pinocchio who comes to life. When Pinocchio goes missing, Geppetto must embark on a quest to bring him back. Burton and Downey Jr. have yet to officially commit to the project, but WB apparently hopes to bring their courtship to a close with the hiring of Goldman as she’ll be incorporating Downey’s notes into her rewrite. This is one of a number of Pinocchio-centered projects in development at the moment, including a stop-motion animated take from Guillermo del Toro and 20th Century Fox’s The Three Misfortunes of Geppetto.
New photos have been released from NBC’s Hannibal series that we first got wind of last spring, when Bryan Fuller (Pushing Daisies) discussed the upcoming show starring Mads Mikkelsen (Casino Royale, and “the sexiest man in Denmark”) as a young Dr. Hannibal Lecter (or at least, pre-killer Lecter). Even more exciting is that the network isn’t making the series go for a typical 22 or 23-episode broadcast season, but a much tighter thirteen (mirroring cable dramas).
The series also stars Hugh Dancy (Martha Marcy May Marlene) as Lecter’s FBI partner, Lawrence Fishburne as their boss, and Scott Thompson (Kids in the Hall) as part of their unit. The series was originally slated to potentially be part of NBC’s fall lineup, but now looks more like to appear in spring of 2013. Hit the jump for more on the series and the pics.
By now you may have heard that NBC has a grave outlook for Bryan Fuller’s Munsters re-imagined series, Mockingbird Lane. Luckily, fans of the Pushing Daisies creator (and the morbidly curious) will get to see the series pilot repurposed as a holiday special later this month. You’ll get to see Jerry O’Connell as Herman Munster, Portia de Rossi as Lily Munster, and Eddie Izzard as the vampire Grandpa (or “D” as they’re calling him), along with Mason Cook as Eddie Munster and Charity Wakefield as Marilyn in the Bryan Singer-directed pilot/Halloween special on October 26th. But you can check out new images of the cast now after the jump.
[Update: The first trailer for the pilot has been released and is now included after the jump.]
Things looked dire the last time we checked on Mockingbird Lane, the Munsters series reboot created by Bryan Fuller (Pushing Daisies). After toiling in development for two years, NBC was reportedly unsatisfied with the finished pilot and leaning toward passing on the project. What I didn’t know was that NBC invested about a $10 million in Mockingbird Lane, a great incentive for the network to find some way to monetize the product. A series order is still a very long shot, but we will get to see the pilot if NBC finalizes plans to air the Bryan Singer-directed episode as a Halloween special later this year. The cast features Jerry O’Connell as Herman Munster, Portia de Rossi as Lily Munster, and Eddie Izzard as the vampire Grandpa. More after the jump:
I have been looking forward to NBC’s Munsters remake Mockingbird Lane, mostly as an opportunity for Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller to play with some dark tragicomedy. (Fuller’s take on the lead: “When you come to The Munsters and have Herman—who’s essentially a zombie in a constant state of decay—and he’s married to a woman who doesn’t age, there’s something very poignant there.”) Alas, it is probably not to be. Deadline hears that NBC is leaning toward passing on the Mockingbird Lane pilot with the caveat that no final decision has been made yet. Rather than cling to that small glimmer of hope, I will shift my Fuller love to the Hannibal Lecter prequel series Hannibal, which already has a 13-episode order for midseason on NBC.
Mockingbird Lane has been kicking around NBC since the 2010-11 development season. Bryan Singer directed the pilot, led by Jerry O’Connell, Portia de Rossi, and Eddie Izzard. Deadline suggests the hourlong pilot was “lauded for its visual style,” but never quite came together. I hope we get to see a bit of footage somewhere down the line. [Update: Fuller has taken to Twitter to assuage some fears, saying "NBC just informed me that the Deadline article regarding #MockingbirdLane was Dead Wrong. Stay tuned for updates!" So, it's still alive! For now.]
While Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller has already cast his Hannibal Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) and Lecter’s puzzle buddy, Detective Will Graham (Hugh Dancy), he’s now zeroing in on who will fill the integral role of Jack Crawford. Crawford is, of course, the agent in charge at the Behavioral Science Unit of the FBI and the one who’s trying to track down an unknown cannibal/serial killer. TV Line now reports that none other than Laurence Fishburne is currently circling the role. Morpheus Fishburne is no stranger to the small screen, as he recently completed a stint on CBS’ never-ending procedural series CSI.
Hannibal is one of two highly anticipated new television projects from Fuller, as he’s also got a Munsters reboot on the way titled Mockingbird Lane. Filming on the pilot for Hannibal—with 30 Days of Night director David Slade at the helm—is set to begin soon, and NBC has already made a commitment for 13 episodes of the series. Hopefully the hourlong drama is ready in time for midseason, because I’m really itching to see this thing. For more info on Fuller’s plan for the series, click here.
Mads Mikkelsen (Casino Royale) is one of those “I think I recognize that guy from something …” actors who may finally get his due in primetime. NBC and writer-producer Bryan Fuller (Pushing Daisies) have tapped the Danish star for the lead role in his upcoming series Hannibal.
Mikkelsen likely has just the right amount of familiarity and mystery to him to be a great find for the role of Dr. Hannibal Lecter, portrayed in his early days as a renowned psychiatrist (but already a monstrous killer, of course). The perennially voted “sexiest man in Denmark” should also be able to channel the necessary seductive charm that would compliment Anthony Hopkins’ Oscar-winning role (in fact, he’s following Hopkins in the Thor franchise, too, having recently entered talks to take on a villainous role in Thor 2). Hit the jump for more about Fuller’s take on this version of Hannibal.