Caroline Dhavernas Talks HANNIBAL, Her Character’s Arc, Filming the Season 2 Finale, Evolving the Show in Season 3, and More

     July 1, 2014


The twistedly haunting, creepy and unexpected NBC series Hannibal is one of the best shows currently on television.  With shocking revelations, psychological cat-and-mouse games, and intricately detailed murders, it certainly stays with you, long after it airs.  And with everyone’s lives in peril by the end of the Season 2 finale, there’s no telling who will still be a part of the show, when it returns for a very differently structured Season 3.

Collider was recently invited to chat with actress Caroline Dhavernas (“Dr. Alana Bloom”) for this exclusive interview about the incredible Season 2 finale, when she found out about the events that occurred in it, how Hannibal on the run in another country is going to force the show to take a bit of a turn, how exciting it is not to have to be repetitive, shooting the big confrontation, who Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) might have real feelings for, how physically challenging the final sequence was to shoot, and how much she’s enjoyed her character’s journey.  Check out what she had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers. 

hannibal-season-2-finale-caroline-dhavernasCollider:  The Season 2 finale was just so incredible.

CAROLINE DHAVERNAS:  Yeah, I loved it, too. 

When you read the script, did you have any idea that that’s what was coming, or was it really shocking?

DHAVERNAS:  Well, it took awhile for us to know how the season would end.  They only had the first six episodes in mind because they had to start writing really quickly, so I didn’t know what was going to happen.  What’s great with television is that you’re shooting and you’re understanding what your character is going through, as you’re making it.  You don’t have complete knowledge where you’re going, story wise and character wise.

Did you know what the ultimate outcome for your character was going to be in the finale?

DHAVERNAS: Well, I knew I was falling out the window, but that was going to arrive a little earlier on in the season, as foreshadowing.  But, it ended up just appearing at the end.  So, I knew something was happening, but I didn’t know exactly who was going to be pushing me out.  We got to hear a little bit, as we went along.

Do you know if you survived the fall? 

DHAVERNAS:  I know nothing. 

Do you come up with your own theories, or do you want until you get the scripts?

DHAVERNAS:  It’s hard because the show is going to have to take some sort of left turn.  Hannibal is on the run again, so where are we going from there?  Where is he?  He’s on a plane, but to where?  He’s not going to be in the same country, so I have no idea what’s going to happen.

hannibal-mads-mikkelsen-caroline-dhavernasIs it exciting to know that the show will have to feel different, in Season 3?

DHAVERNAS:  I think it’s a good challenge.  It’s hard for a show to survive because the audience gets to know the characters better and the story isn’t as new as it was at the very beginning.  I think a lot of shows lose their air that way.  But because, with this show, you don’t know what’s going to happen and you can’t see it coming, I think it saves us from having to be repetitive. 

What was it like to shoot the whole confrontation between Alana Bloom and Hannibal Lecter, especially knowing that she had so much faith in him?

DHAVERNAS:  It was very emotional, stressful and beautiful, at the same time.  We were wrapping something up that had been so intimate, and then it was crashed into completely.  She was in such shock.  It’s great material for an actor.  It’s fun.  There was so much going on. 

Were you surprised that Hannibal actually gave Alana a chance to leave, whether he actually meant it or not? 

DHAVERNAS:  Whether he meant it or not is the question.  I don’t think he did.  Maybe he did.

Do you think Hannibal ever had any real feelings for Alana?

hannibal-caroline-dhavernas-5DHAVERNAS:  I think he might have.  I think he might have been there with her when they were together.  It’s just that he will always look after his own interests.  He’s a narcissist.  He doesn’t really care about anyone else.

Is there anyone who Hannibal really cares enough about not to kill?

DHAVERNAS:  I think Will could have been the only one, but he felt threatened by him, at the end.  The only person he would want to save is the one that got to see him and also accept him.  But, when’s that going to happen?  Who in their right mind would accept him?

Was there a scene or sequence that was most challenging to shoot?

DHAVERNAS:  Well, the fall was physically demanding because we did it a bunch of times.  And it was five feet, which isn’t that far, but when you’re falling backwards on a big mat, it kind of is, after you’ve done it a few times.  Your shoulders take the most of it, but it was really fun to do.  I was looking forward to action stuff like that, so I was really excited about it.  It’s very poetic and beautiful, even though it’s a deadly situation.

What was it like to watch all of that?

DHAVERNAS:  When we were shooting it, I would go behind the monitors, so I knew what it looked like.  But when it’s edited and has the music, it becomes alive.  There’s a soul to the scene, and it’s linked with the rest of the episode.  It’s just a beautiful fall, and not meaning the actual fall, but the end of that episode. 

hannibal-caroline-dhavernas-4Is it weird to watch yourself dying?

DHAVERNAS:  Not really.  You’ve shot it, you know what it is and you’ve felt it.  It’s just more a curiosity of how it all came together, I supposed. 

And you had to just lie there while it rained freezing cold water on you?

DHAVERNAS:  Yes, massive amounts of it, and it was so cold.  I can’t even begin to tell you how cold it was.  For awhile it was really cold, but then it become that much colder.  Someone said, “Oh, yeah, the first truck went away, and that’s the second truck of rain.”  For some reason, the second truck was so cold.  It was like Arctic water.  It was crazy!  And I had to lie there for a couple of hours.  It was a long, full night.

Your character has had a really interesting journey since the show started.  Is there anything that you’ve most enjoyed about playing Alana Bloom?

DHAVERNAS:  It’s the journey itself.  It’s going through all that.  I can’t really pick a specific moment or a scene.  But I liked the finale from Season 1, as well.  I like when it all comes together and it becomes so dire and complicated, emotionally.  That’s fun to play. 

Hannibal will return for Season 3 on NBC in early 2015.

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