Fans of Bryan Fuller’s “Hannibal” have long shipped the serial killer with criminal profiler Will Graham, mainly because of the expert homoerotic tension created between actors Mads Mikkelsen and Hugh Dancy. In a recent interview with Vulture, Mikkelsen admitted he toyed with the idea of kissing Dancy during their final moments of screen time during the “Hannibal” Season 3 finale, which unexpectedly became the series finale after NBC decided not to renew the cult favorite drama.
“We actually did a couple of takes of the very last scene where we were looking at each other, and it was a little too obvious — it was almost a kiss,” Mikkelsen said. “Me and Hugh were like, ‘Why not? We have a couple of takes. Let’s do one. It might be cool.””
Mikkelsen and Dancy were all in on the kiss between Hannibal and Will, but showrunner Fuller knew such a moment would hit the nail on the head too much. As Mikkelsen explained, “We never went for the kiss. Bryan loved it, but he was like, ‘Too much, guys. It’s too obvious.’ And he was absolutely right.”
“I think we were just stuck on that. And a lot of the Fannibals wanted it as well,” Mikkelsen said about the cut kiss. “It’s been a subject of homoerotic fan art. And for good reason, because they are so united as twins in many ways. But we never wanted it to be a physical thing. It was something much bigger than that.”
“Hannibal” Season 4 revival talks have percolated for years now (the show’s arrival on Netflix last summer reignited hope the streaming giant might make a fourth season), and Mikkelsen told Vulture it’s still very much his intention to continue playing Hannibal despite the amount of work that goes into pulling the series off.
“The work itself was brutal because we had long hours, with scripts coming in late,” Mikkelsen said. “It’s TV, and what we were doing was elaborate. The texts were high-IQ texts. The monologues or the dialogues were always about fine art, music. You had to learn Japanese, Hungarian, and words you had simply never heard before. And you had to do it within two hours because everything came so late. Having said that, I would love to go back. Everybody wants to go back, and if there’s only one season and we’re sure about that, he can finish it in a proper, surprising, stunning way.”
With that said, Mikkelsen admitted he’s happy the show got to run on a broadcast network like NBC and not on a streaming platform right off the bat. “I’ve been wondering if we had been on some other platform and could do whatever we wanted, would we have gone more for the graphic stuff and forgotten some of the poetry?” Mikkelsen said. “Maybe it was a good thing we had to hold back. It served the show really well that we didn’t go full-blast ‘Walking Dead’ on it.”
Head over to Vulture’s website to read Mikkelsen’s latest interview in its entirety.