There are certainly parts of Thomas Harris' books "Hannibal" (the basis for the Ridley Scott film) and "Hannibal Rising" (the basis for the movie prequel many would like to forget) that are popular among fans of the Dr. Lecter character. However, there are other elements in both novels that, frankly, fans wouldn't mind being erased from the canon.
Fortunately, Bryan Fuller's Hannibal TV show has already shown a willingness to pick and choose what it likes - and change what it doesn't - from Harris' source material thus far. That should continue with the show's upcoming third season, which shall draw heavily from both of the aforementioned novels for its over-arching narrative: a story that has Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) chasing Dr. Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) and his partner Dr. Bedelia Du Maurier (Gillian Anderson) around Europe, a year after the violent events that ensured during the season two finale.
NBC has now officially scheduled Hannibal season three to begin in a few months starting Thursday, June 4th. Fuller went ahead and posted the first poster for the new season to his Twitter account, showing Dr. Maurier taking in the sights during her European "vacation" with Dr. Lecter.
— Bryan Fuller (@BryanFuller) March 6, 2015
Here's a roundup of key new casting additions for Hannibal season three:
- Richard Armitage (The Hobbit trilogy) is taking on the role of Francis Dolarhyde a.k.a. the serial known as The Tooth Fairy from Red Dragon.
- Joe Anderson (Across the Universe) will take over Michael Pitt's season two role as Mason Verger - now that the character is paralyzed and his face has been irreparably damaged.
- Rutina Wesley (True Blood) will play Reba McClane, the blind woman who catches Dolarhyde's attention, unaware of her admirer's dark side.
- Zachary Quinto (Heroes, Star Trek) is playing a patient of Dr. Maurier's - and let's face it, odds are he's a serial killer too.
- Tao Okamoto (The Wolverine) is playing Chiyoh, the handmaid to Lady Murasaki: Dr. Lecter's Japanese aunt.
The third season of Hannibal will incorporate new genre elements into the mix, providing what ought to be a substantially different experience, storytelling-wise, than what was provided by season two - and not just in terms of the scenery, either. Then again, season two for the high critical returns/low ratings draw TV show was, in many ways, a far cry from what transpired in season one, stylistic and tonal qualities aside.
Indeed, the Hannibal producers have long managed to maintain the same eery dream-like atmosphere throughout the series, no matter the situation - be it the latest in the growing line of gruesome murder scenes or a tense exchange within the confines of a prison for the criminally insane. So long as that holds true with season three (as a cat/mouse hunt ensues across Europe), then it's hard to image how Fan-nibals will be disappointed with what lies ahead.
Hannibal season three begins airing on NBC starting June 4th, 2015 at 10/9c.
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