- Published on Friday, July 27 2012
- Written by Katie Marzullo
Another cinematic serial killer is getting his own TV series… and it’s all thanks to Ed Gein.
“Who the hell is Ed Gein?” asks the perfectly sane person who has chosen to remain ignorant of such unpleasant things. Ed Gein was the man who launched a thousand movie crazies. In the 1940s, meek and quiet (too quiet) Wisconsinite Ed Gein was arrested for killing and mutilating women, including his own mother. The story made headlines for the simple fact that everyone considered Eddie so benign that he wouldn’t even hurt a fly…
The last part of that sentence sound familiar? It should. It was the last line from Psycho, spoken by Norman Bates’s “Mother” in reference to her son, who had also just been arrested for murdering and mutilating a few women… including her. Norman Bates was based on Ed Gein.
And he’s not the only one. Some of the most classic movie villains also borrowed from Gein’s story, including Leatherface from Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and Buffalo Bill from Silence of the Lambs.
So, why am I bringing all this up? Because a close associate of Buffalo Bill’s, Hannibal Lecter, is joining ranks with good ol’ Norman Bates on the telly. Okay, so, Lector himself was not directly based on Gein, though they definitely share some characteristics, and it’s still a fun bit of trivia. So there.
In any case, in addition to A&E’s upcoming “Bates Motel” series, chronicling Norman Bates’s troubled upbringing with the mother whom he would one day kill and impersonate, NBC is bringing Dr. Lecter to the small screen for the series “Hannibal”, based around the characters created by crime novelist Thomas Harris. The series will revolve around the original story, Red Dragon, and the cat-and-mouse game between FBI agent Will Graham and the deranged Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter. Will, who has been portrayed on the big screen by both William S. Peterson and Edward Norton, is going to be brought back to life on TV by British actor Hugh Dancy. As for Lecter, the role that won Anthony Hopkins an Oscar, the very appropriately-named Mads Mikkelsen will be taking on that challenge – you’ll best remember Mads the villain from 2006’s Casino Royale. (He kinda looks like he enjoys a nice people-steak every once in a while, no?) Laurence Fishburne was recently added to the cast as well, playing BSU agent Jack Crawford. Sounds like a pretty solid troupe! And with Bryan Fuller at the helm – the man also behind successful shows like “Star Trek: Voyager”, “Pushing Daises”, and “Heroes”, and with the Munsters reboot “Mockingbird Lane” in the pipeline – I see no reason why this won’t be another slamdunk. Thanks for the (gruesome) inspiration, Mr. Gein!
“Hannibal” is currently in pre-pro and slated to debut midseason next year.
- Katie Marzullo, YH Staff Editor
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