Bryan Fuller Talks NBC’s HANNIBAL and STAR TREK TV Series Reboot

     April 19, 2012


Though the wonderfully inventive series Pushing Daisies was cancelled way before its time, creator/executive producer Bryan Fuller is coming back to television with two new series.  The first is a reboot of The Munsters for NBC called Mockingbird Lane, and the second is a small screen incarnation of novelist Thomas Harris’ infamous character Hannibal.  Fuller recently revealed a few details regarding the latter, including sex changes for a couple characters and his intention to do a cable model on network television with 13-episode seasons.  Moreover, Fuller gave a brief update on his plans for a TV series reboot for Star Trek.  Hit the jump to see what he had to say.

bryan-fuller-hannibalThough the all-important role of Dr. Lecter has yet to be cast, we recently learned that Hugh Dancy will take on the role of FBI agent William Graham.  Speaking with EW, Fuller confirmed that he’s using bits of backstory found in Harris’ Red Dragon as the basis for the first few seasons of Hannibal.  The show will follow Lecter and Graham working side-by-side solving crimes, with the latter none the wiser about Lecter’s serial killing pastime:

“It’s before he was incarcerated, so he’s more of a peacock. There is a cheery disposition to our Hannibal. He’s not being telegraphed as a villain. 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.”

The story will begin as this sort of “buddy” procedural following two highly intelligent men solving crimes, but Fuller plans to completely change the dynamic of the series once Lecter is outed as a serial killer.  It’s an incredibly ambitious plan, especially for network television, and I can’t think of anyone better than Fuller to put it all together.

hannibal-anthony-hopkins-edward-nortonFuller revealed that he pitched a seven-season arc to NBC, including stories from various Harris books.  He’s also switching up the gender of a few characters (in a commendable reference to Battlestar Galactica, Fuller calls this gender swapping “Starbucking”), as Dr. Alan Bloom will now become Dr. Alana Bloom and tabloid journalist Freddy Lounds is now tabloid blogger Fredricka Lounds.

Though Fuller will certainly have his hands full running Hannibal and Mockingbird Lane, the innovative scribe hasn’t given up for plans to reboot a fan favorite series at some point in the future:

Bryan [Singer] and I are big fans of [Star] Trek and have discussed a take on what we would do, and we would love to do it. I don’t think anything is going to happen in any official capacity until after the next movie comes out. And I’m sure it would be wisely under J.J. Abrams’ purview of what happens. He’s the guardian of Trek right now.”

Fuller and Singer have been hoping to bring Star Trek back to the small screen for a few years now, and Fuller got his start writing on Star Trek: Voyager and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.  However, things likely won’t move ahead until Paramount has exhausted the latest film franchise incarnation of the series.  Given that most franchises are done in threes as of late, maybe Fuller and Singer could get their turn after Abrams makes a third and final film?