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Anthony Hopkins on 'Hannibal' TV series: 'Don't play Lecter as evil'

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Anthony Hopkins has offered his advice to Mads Mikkelsen, star of the new Hannibal TV series.

Casino Royale's Mikkelsen will play cannibal killer Hannibal Lecter in the new NBC drama - the role famously portrayed by Hopkins in 1991's The Silence of the Lambs and two follow-up movies.

Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lecter in 'Silence of the Lambs'
Mads Mikkelsen in Hannibal

© NBC Universal















Oscar winner Hopkins wished the Danish actor "good luck" in an interview with Vulture and advised his successor to play Lecter as "ordinary".

"The key is, when playing a crazy man like that, is to play the total opposite," the Welsh star said. "Play him as totally sane. Play him as ordinary [and] don't try to be evil."

Mikkelsen recently described NBC's Hannibal - from Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller - as "quite bloody" with "a lot of gruesomeness".

Also attached to star in Hannibal are Laurence Fishburne, Gina Torres, Eddie Izzard and Hugh Dancy - who will play Lecter's FBI nemesis Will Graham.

The series will premiere on NBC in early 2013.

> Anna Chlumsky joins cast of NBC's 'Hannibal'
> Hannibal Lecter TV series adds Raul Esparza

Watch a trailer for 2002 Hannibal Lecter movie Red Dragon below:

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