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Hannibal Recast Shocker: Michael Pitt Out, Joe Anderson In as Mason Verger

Michael Pitt will no longer be hearing the screaming squealing of the lambs pigs when Hannibal returns for Season 3.

The actor, who played sociopathic meat-packing magnate Mason Verger in Season 2, is not returning to the series and will be replaced by Joe Anderson (The Divide, The River), TVLine has learned exclusively.

The decision not to return was Pitt’s, according to sources.

The recast comes at a fairly convenient time in Mason’s story arc: When we last saw him, he was under the influence of Dr. Lecter’s hallucinogenic drugs, and being led by the titular serial killer to carve off chunks of his own face to feed to himself and nemesis Will Graham’s dogs.

In October, TVLine reported that Season 3 of Hannibal will introduce a new recurring character named Cordell, the “quiet, very intelligent and definitely creepy” personal doctor to Mason. The late-thirtysomething character is described as “attentive and gentle with Mason, a professional who cares about his work, but we get a sense he might be as sadistic as his boss — and a perfect fit to become his potential henchman.”

Update: Anderson has posted a photo of himself on Instagram in full Mason Verger regalia — check it out below (if you dare).

joe-anderson-hannibal-cast-mason-verger

Bummed about Pitt’s exit from Hannibal? Excited to see what Anderson can do with the role? Sound off in the comments!