Hannibal Preview: Hugh Dancy on Will and Alana ('There's Always a Future') and Dr. Lecter's Deceit

Hannibal Season 1 SpoilersWill Hannibal‘s Will Graham eventually find love, or is he destined to go stag forever?

While the question is moot in the short run – at the moment, the guy’s a little busy recovering from brain-cooking encephalitis and being manipulated by a serial killer – it’s certainly something star Hugh Dancy is considering as his gory NBC drama reaches the end of its freshman season.

Can Dancy’s tormented profiler ever be a good, healthy match for Caroline Dhavernas‘ Alana? Here, the British actor gives TVLine his thoughts on the more-than-friendly pair and hints at what Dr. Lecter’s cooking up in the Season 1 finale (which airs Thursday, June 20 at 10/9c) and beyond.

PHOTOS | Hannibal Season 1 Spoilers — First Look: Dead Like Me‘s Ellen Muth Guest-Stars

TVLINE | What can you tease about the Will/Alana relationship in upcoming episodes? She’s repeatedly said they can’t have a romantic relationship, but they seem drawn to each other regardless.
Put it this way: Neither of us die this season. So there’s always a future. It was always interesting to me to imagine how the hell someone like Will Graham would have any kind of romantic life. That’s what we were scratching away [at]… Without giving too much away about how this season ends, the whole dynamic is going to be shifted next season. It’ll be interesting to see.

Hannibal Season 1 SpoilersTVLINE | Will your character find out this season that Hannibal lied to him about the encephalitis? Will Will have any lasting effects from the illness?
I can’t tell you that! …There was a guy who was a profiler for the FBI, who was one of the people that [The Silence of the Lambs author] Thomas Harris talked to and based my character on, and also Jack’s character. And he did almost die of encephalitis. In the mind of [Hannibal creator] Bryan Fuller, that was absorbed and filtered and came out as what you see.

TVLINE | What can you tell us about this season’s finale?
It all comes to a head. We’re not going to leave you hanging.

TVLINE | Bryan Fuller has said next season will see the break-up of Will and Hannibal’s bromance.
[Laughs] Did he say that? It’s safe to say, we’re getting into that territory… Will is meant to be the most intelligent guy on the Earth and the best at his job. But he’s suffering. He hasn’t got all the cards in his hand. Whether that happens this season or next season, I don’t want to be too specific. But we’ll get there.

TVLINE | Will Will get a lot worse before he gets better?
[Laughs] Yes. He gets worse before he gets better.

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40 Comments
  1. Annie says:

    “Go stag forever.” Ha. What you did there? I see it.

  2. Teag says:

    I hope Red Dragon is season 3, Silence of the Lambs is 4, and Hannibal is 5.

  3. Erica says:

    I, too, enjoyed the pun

  4. Ah, thanks for this! Love Will and Alana so much, and I’m curious as to whether Alana is a mixture of the Alan Bloom and Molly characters.

    This is the best show on TV along with Breaking Bad, couldn’t be more thrilled that it’s continuing! Thanks, NBC!

    • ec says:

      I think Bryan Fuller mentioned that the way things are planned, they’re going to introduce Molly in the third season (hopefully the show will get a well-deserved renewal next year as well). I think Alana and Molly are going to be very different, Molly being necessarily distant from this serial killer world. Honestly, I loved Molly in the book, but I’m so in love with Catherine Dhavernas and Will/Alana that I really think in the show I’m just going to end up hating Molly regardless of casting. :(

      • Maybe he said that just to rattle us? I really can’t see Molly and Will working… and I doubt all the fans are going to be pleased. What’s the point of developing Will/Alana if he’s going to end up with someone else? Ugh

      • Laura says:

        I agree, I loved Will/Molly in the books. I’m not sure I would like it in the series, precisely because I really like Will/Alana and I would love it if he could stay with her, I mean why would they show us Will/Alana so much if then he’d end married to Molly?, that would be *kinda* annoying, but looks like they will introduce her later um, but meanwhile there’s season 2 so maybe Will and Alana could get together, for some time, I’m down for that then! :) .

  5. JJ says:

    John Douglas is the real profiler! His books are so interesting, talk about an amazing career. I liked Molly in the books but I really hope they don’t bring her into the series. They’ve changed it so much from the books, in such an interesting way, that I hope they continue with the deviation and keep pursuing the Will/Alana storyline.

  6. Ruby says:

    I haven’t followed the books, so I hope Will is a central character throughout. I find him MUCH more fascinating than Hannibal, though, Hannibal is getting more interesting. Either way, I LOVE this show, and I hope Hugh Dancy is recognized come award time because he is utterly phenomenal in this. I never thought much of him before (didn’t dislike him, he just never made an impression) but his performance in this is riveting and I can’t take my eyes off him.

  7. erin says:

    Ugh, no more Will/Alana. I’m all about Will/Beverly even though I know it’s never going to happen.

  8. kirads09 says:

    I just hope Hugh’s incredible performance as Will is on Emmy radar. That is all.

  9. argo says:

    The show is so good. I wish it were on cable. NBC does not deserve it.

    • Trenton says:

      They have been as daring as anything you’d see on mad men or breaking bad…unless you mean Showtime or HBO? I think there should be balance of material…I like that NBC took a chance on something like this, but with the cast and people behind it…no brainer. I think the model for just picking and paying top talent for less episodes and forgoing the melange of pilots makes more sense. It gives actors more time to do other projects and gives people more fun things to enjoy

  10. GiveUsHannigram says:

    UGH NO why is the show pushing the Will/Alana angle down our throats? 90% of the fandom is all about shipping Will with HANNIBAL, almost no one wants to see Will with Alana and yet all these articles are about the heterosexual “spark” between Will and Alana. DO YOU NOT EVEN PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR FANBASE NBC?

    Jeez, either TV people are purely blind-stupid or they’re all homophobes. Flapping Willana in our faces doesn’t do a thing. If this article had been about the relationship between Will and Hannibal it would be reblogged 10k times on Tumblr by now.

    • dean says:

      You sound like you’re from tumblr and you’ve clrealy confused a loud minority with the majority.

      • GiveUsHannigram says:

        And you sound like you have an agenda. It isn’t just Tumblr. ALL social media sites centered on Hannibal (Twitter, Facebook, etc) favor Will/Hannibal over any other pairing 100-1. Now go ahead; tell me the internet is a minority.

        Or are you saying that those who favor heterosexual pairings are just shy, retiring people who prefer to do these things quietly? Tell that to “Twilight”.

        • Holy crap you sure sound like the delusional and angry Hannigram fans. Are you angstytimelord? Get real, Will/Hannibalwill NEVER happen. Stop with this hatred, you’re embarrassing yourself.

          • GiveUsHannigram says:

            Wow, where in the world are you reading “hatred” from? For that matter, since I’m right and can back it up with the popularity numbers, where are you reading “delusional”? All I’m saying is that Will and Alana are BORING as a couple (mostly because Alana brings nothing to the table), and it seems to me that since NBC is CONSTANTLY hitting the fans up for support on Twitter and Facebook, they should be willing to hear what the fans are into.

            I don’t know who “timelord” is, but that does reveal that you’re involved in some kind of shipping war. Not sure that you meant to give that away. Are you angry that Willana gets about 1/100th of the attention that Hannigram does? Sorry about that. Personally, I think Will/Beverly is much cuter and much more realistic. Alana is boring and just not Will’s type.

            And Will/Hannibal will never happen because a cannibal serial on Tv is fine, but a gay cannibal serial killer is just going too far, right?

      • anon says:

        This ^
        And please let this childish discussion.

        • Lissa says:

          Funny how it’s “childish” when the fans want a non-heteronormative pairing. Maybe you should check your straight privilege.

    • You mean the “fanbase” that wants Will/Hannibal? lmao yeah he definitely should listen to you guys…

      • GiveUsHannigram says:

        They should, if they want our support. Throwing a carrot out to get a slash fanbase and then ignoring them amounts to gay baiting. And trust me, they’re listening. Just Google ‘Hannibal Bromance’. Bryan Fuller has been tagging “Hannibal” as a Love Story from the very beginning, and he did NOT mean Will/Alana. All the fans are saying is “Put up or Shut Up”.

        • Smitty JO says:

          You do realize that it’s JUST a tv show, right? Go outside and get some air.

          • Lissa says:

            -Says the guy sitting at his computer responding to a tv show interview. Pot, meet kettle.

            And yawn yawn another lackluster heterosexual romance pairing. *falls asleep* Grow some, NBC. You know what we want.

    • Alice says:

      Are you tangentially aware of the books, or even the movies? Fuller and the gang are following the source materials. The sex-swapping of Freddie and Alana are brilliant; regardless, the homo-social relationship between Will and Hannibal [spoilers] ends VERY badly.

      • GiveUsHannigram says:

        Yeah, I’ve read all the books. “Silence of the Lambs” is my least favorite of the series and “Hannibal Rising” my favorite. Why does everyone assume that because you’d like to see Hannibal and Will in a relationship you’ve never read the books and you’d be put off because it “ends badly”. Did it end badly for Clarice and Hannibal? Because it really, really did, but you wouldn’t ask this question of someone who shipped Hannibal/Clarice, would you?

        Fuller & co. are following the source material, but they have vast leeway and they don’t have the rights to the Clarice Starling character, so what’s wrong with just dropping pretty Will in that slot, hmm?

  11. Aprilcot says:

    I love this show, and Hugh Dancy is SO. GOOD. I really hope Emmy is paying attention.

  12. Trenton says:

    I hope this show continues … would love to see who they would get as a clarice character…(Katee Sackoff would be my choice…never seen her do reserved before)…

    • HannibalFan says:

      Personally I don’t want Clarice in the Hannibal tv series. I think seeing Will and Hannibal’s interaction is fine enough for me plus they don’t have Clarice’s rights

  13. Vanessa says:

    Why does there have to be a pairing at all? The current relationship statuses are fine. Why does every show have to incorporate some sort of romantic element? That’s not all there is to life. In this show in particular, it would take time away from much more interesting plot elements.

    • NoToRomance says:

      I agree I don’t want any romantic relationship for this show. Just leave that to the fandom. But i want my canon to be no romance free for this one because it’s already brilliant on its own

  14. R.O.B. says:

    Hugh Dancy is killing this role. Excellent performance. I am having a hard time understanding Hannibal without subtitles, though. And I don’t quite get that nobody on the show thinks it’s weird that Hannibal keeps inviting them over for ultra fancy candlelight dinners. Is nobody uncomfortable with that? Last thing – I love me some Kids in the Hall, but the guy from that show who plays one of the CSI’s… he’s gotta go.

  15. n-d says:

    The finale is going to be AMAZING. The actors are fantastic, the story one of the most exciting and suspenseful I’ve seen, and the chemistry and charge between Will and Hannibal in every scene is off the charts.

    That said, another boring heterosexual romance would be completely uninteresting. Alana’s a great character and a great friend to Will, and it would be refreshing to keep it that way. Did they really change Alan Bloom into Alana Bloom just to make her a love interest? Yawn.

    Not expecting anything to come of the Hannibal/Will relationship, of course. Everyone knows network TV is too cowardly to go there.

    • HannibalFan says:

      I still have that issue in genderswapping. It’s annoying, they should have stuck with the original gender and if they wanted a female character then they should have introduced Molly then. But the show is pretty great so I guess it’s kinda fine. Hannibal/Will interactions are always the highlight in every episode, hoping to see more of them now that the game rules have changed.

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