Exclusive: Another Pushing Daisies Alum Joins NBC's Hannibal in Pivotal Role

Raul Esparza HannibalBryan Fuller is welcoming another old friend into the Hannibal fold.

Broadway vet Raul Esparza is joining NBC’s contemporary Hannibal Lecter series in the key role of Dr. Chilton, TVLine has learned exclusively.

RELATED | Is Pushing Daisies Bound For Broadway?

The character was originated on the big screen by actor Benjamin Hendrickson in 1986’s Manhunter. Anthony Heald took over the role of Lecter’s infamous jailer in The Silence of the Lambs and Red Dragon.

Like Hannibal‘s Caroline Dhavernas, Molly Shannon, Chelan Simons, Ellen Greene and Gina Torres, Esparza previously worked with exec producer Fuller: He played traveling salesman Alfredo Aldarisio in Fuller’s Pushing Daisies.

Hannibal, which is based on characters from Thomas Harris’ Red Dragon, centers on the budding relationship between FBI agent Will Graham (played by Hugh Dancy) and his mentor Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen) – who are re-introduced at the beginning of their budding relationship. It’s slated to bow at midseason.

Esparza is set to appear in at least two episodes.

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  1. vane says:

    Am really excited about this!

  2. Jason says:

    Schedule it, NBC!

  3. Zoe says:

    Does this mean we won’t have to deal with his asshole DA character on SVU anymore? If so, this is good news indeed. (I’m sure Esparza is a perfectly nice guy, it’s his character I don’t like.)

    • Belle says:

      his “asshole” DA is actually the one person with a good set of brains in the courtroom not to mention he can deal with hothead detectives – he’s the reason i even bother watch SVU these days

  4. Jennifer says:

    After seeing him on L&O SVU I WILL be watching this! I was really hoping the show would make him more permanent as I look forward to his appearances, plus he’s not hard to look at. I love how dynamic his character is on L&O, sure he’s a bit of an a**hole but he’s usually not wrong and he knows his stuff, that’s the kind of lawyer I would want on my side.

  5. Tyler Elliott says:

    Esparza is a really good actor.. saw him in the musical ‘Company’.. Very talented