Every canceled fan-favorite draws accusations as to which factors caused its demise, and NBC’s Hannibal was no different. The dark and dreamy Mads Mikkelsen-Hugh Dancy drama simply didn’t have the viewers, something producer Martha De Laurentiis believes owes to piracy.

Speaking to Yahoo, De Laurentiis dropped at least some responsibility for Hannibal’s demise at the feet of cord-cutting pirates, notable given that the series reached #5 on 2013's list of most-pirated series. Even as most episodes were available to download next-day, De Laurentiis offered:

When nearly one-third of your audience for Hannibal is coming from pirated sites… You don’t have to know calculus to do the math. If a show is stolen, it makes it difficult, if not impossible, to fairly compensate a crew and keep a series in production.

There’s still the outside possibility that Hannibal could reconvene at the table a few years down the line, perhaps a mini-series or movie to more easily schedule around its talent. In any case, Dancy remains busy with Hulu’s The Path, while Mads Mikkelsen works on a little something to do with Star Wars, and Fuller himself gears up to shoot American Gods in Toronto.

Plenty of series manage to thrive in spite of piracy, but could Hannibal have been a perfect storm of illegal downloads and cult success? Could piracy affect our chances of ever getting some kind of followup?

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