The moment NBC announced that they were to dip into the famous Thomas Harris canon for an original thriller set in the early days of cannibalistic villain Hannibal Lecter's relationship with Will Graham, fans everywhere couldn't wait to learn who could possibly fill the iconic mask left behind by Sir Anthony Hopkins.  Well...

Hugh Dancy - 'The Silence of the Lambs'

We still have no idea.  What we do know however, is that Deadline TV reports British actor Hugh Dancy will take the role of young FBI agent Will Graham!  NBC's incarnation of 'Hannibal' takes a contemporary approach to the budding relationship between FBI agent Will Graham and his mentor, the iconic Dr. Hannibal Lecter.

Dancy is best known for his Emmy-nominated performance in HBO's 'Elizabeth I,' and also recently finished up a stint on Showtime's Laura Linney dramedy 'The Big C.'  The role of Will Graham was previously played by Edward Norton in the 2002 prequel adaptation to 'The Silence of the Lambs,' 'Red Dragon.'  Prior to that, William Petersen played the part in the 1986 adaptation 'Manhunter.'

As of yet, it remains unknown who will take the more iconic of the two roles, that of the villainous Hannibal Lecter, most famously played by Sir Anthony Hopkins in the 1991 Jonathan Demme film 'The Silence of the Lambs,' then again in 2001's 'Hannibal' and 2002's 'Red Dragon.'  Brian Cox played the killer in the earlier adaptation 'Manhunter,' with Gaspard Ulliel playing a young Lecter in 2007's 'Hannibal Rising.'

NBC's thirteen-episode 'Hannibal' will be written and executive produced by Bryan Fuller ('Pushing Daisies,' Dead Like Me') and executive produced by Martha DeLaurentiis.

So, does Dancy whet your appetite for the inevitable Hannibal Lecter casting?  Will you tune in to see NBC's take on the cannibalistic villain in his earlier years.  Prep your fava beans and Chianti now, and give us your deepest analysis in the comments below!

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