‘Hannibal’ Season 4? Bryan Fuller Hints at Amazon, Netflix Discussions

Hannibal NBC
Courtesy of NBC

The news of “Hannibal’s” cancellation earlier this week sent the Twitterverse into a frenzy with a #SaveHannibal campaign, set off by creator and exec producer Bryan Fuller.

As previously reported, the daring drama has garnered much interest from other venues so Fuller gave Variety a reality check on “Hannibal’s” future: While no deals have been sealed, discussions are happening.

“I know there have been discussions on a couple of fronts with Netflix and Amazon,” Fuller says. “But I believe our deal with Amazon precludes a Netflix component so I think Netflix, who has expressed interest and has expressed great enthusiasm for the show… I don’t think contractually with our Amazon contract, they can pick up the show.”

Amazon holds the rights to the first three seasons of “Hannibal,” so it would make most sense to bring new life to the show over there, as opposed to via Netflix or perhaps another network, such as NBC-owned cablers Syfy, USA or Esquire, which are all heavy on scripted dramas as of late. (As for those NBC Universal cable properties picking up his show, Fuller says he has not heard any rumblings.)

Though Amazon is a sensible fit, problems can arise without NBC involved, as an international component is key and much of the show’s funding comes from Europe, which is how Gaumont, the French studio behind “Hannibal,” secured the deal for the show’s current season.

“All I know is that things are being discussed with venues to see how interested they actually are. I don’t know to what extent,” Fuller says. “Without an NBC component, it’s a little complicated. Even some of our international partners, because there’s no NBC component, will pass on a fourth season.”

The exec producer also pointed out that outside interest may feel like “Hannibal” is “someone else’s,” thus he would rather pursue original programming than continue with an established series.

Despite this season hitting a series-low 0.5 rating in adults 18-49, however, the Twitter chatter helps the chances for pickup.

“Absolutely, it helps,” Fuller says of the intense social-media support. As news of the cancellation spread, fans followed Fuller’s lead and tweeted #SaveHannibal, even launching petitions for Netflix and other streaming services to grab onto the show. Supporters including Ryan Murphy tweeted support.

“The fact that the fannibals have been so passionate about the show and so enthusiastic, it always helps,” Fuller added. “It may not be the thing that seals the deal, but it is an indicator of audience interest.”

If the series does get another go, Fuller would embrace the chance to continue the story and would want to stay heavily involved, balancing his exec producer duties on his upcoming Starz series “American Gods,” which was just greenlit. He’s also excited for the chance to introduce the Clarice Starling character, but just because “Hannibal” could be letting go of broadcast boundaries, don’t expect a huge shift in content.

“I don’t know how much darker we can possibly go,” Fuller says with a laugh. “The concept for the Season 4 arc is one that is inherently twisted, but also such a dynamic shift from where we were the first three seasons that there is also a broadening of the palette to include a lot more humor.”

While all discussions are in early phases, Fuller is open to many options — even a “Hannibal” movie.

“The planned arc for Season 4 is a very exciting one, so I would love to see the show continue, whether it be as a series or even condensed into a thriller as a film, as well,” Fuller says. “But with any of these things, it’s so hard to predict which way interest would fall.”

In the meantime, “Hannibal” still has a lot of life to live. Fuller and the cast are heading to Comic-Con, and new episodes air through Aug. 27. “We have 10 more episodes that we get to share and live tweet with (the fans) and discuss with them. I think this season gets progressively more dynamic and exciting,” he says. “But I would love to work with this cast again. I think we’ve assembled such a fantastic group of people, I would be a fool not to work with them again.”

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  1. Barbara lee says:

    Please dont kill Hannibal and will they make a good team.i didnt care for freddy at all or wills wife.change charictor it was outstanding the bond between them the need as friends i have seen the serioys 5 times Hannibal is adorable and so is will.good luck. To bad you had to kill lady mirasoki I wonted to see Him in a pasonite love sean with her. Hannibal told her he loved her. Kill off margo and Hannibal old fling.

  2. Sue says:

    I’ve been watching the entirety of Hannibal for years, and I’m truly sad that this series is being cancelled. One thing I think is too risky is to air the show on a channel u suited for more mature audiences which was a huge mistake from the beginning. If Hannibal was on HBO it would be totally accepted given the gore of the program which needs to be expressed as that is the core of the leading character. Please bring Hannibal back to us!

  3. Adrienne says:

    I am very disappointed about the show being canceled. All the fans and I will advise you to keep the show ongoing until everyone will be completely satisfied when it definitely falls.

  4. Mariusz says:

    Please keep the show going it is the greatest show I’ve watched I would love to see it to the end

  5. Gabby says:

    I’ve just finished watching the last episode if Hannibal. I absolutely love this show. It cannot end this way. Lector and will! Please please season 4 must happen!!

  6. Becky says:

    Please please let this be true, I watched the first 2 seasons on sky box sets and got hooked so kept looking for season 3 and now want season 4.

  7. Fannibal in MD says:

    NBC didn’t know how to market this show. Every time I saw a commercial for it, it seemed like another cookie cutter crime show. I never watched it on NBC while it was around. But I’ve been binge watching it online and see its depth now. I’d love for Netflix to get it and breathe new life into it.

  8. How could NBC cancel “Hannibal” and keep a scrappy show like “game Night?” It aS such h a rare, artistically, beautiful program. I loved the cast, the writing, the cooking preparation and the humor. First “Community” and now ” Hannibal?” NBC, you are the worst! ~Sandra.

  9. Blayre says:

    PLEASE, Please start up another type of petition to help those who watch the show, but do not use social media,(as a personal choice), to sign!!! I give my word to sign an alternate petition! And also urge fellow Fannibals to sign that petition as well! This show NEEDS to continue. Thank you.

  10. Ingrid says:

    I agree this show has to live on, and FX. does sound like a good fit .Please don’t let it die.

  11. I truelly, i am unable to understand the Americans, why do not like the tv show of Hannibal? I hope to stay i alive.

  12. Topspinner says:

    Every word out of H’s mouth is poetry, it’s quite addictive. Can’t imagine commercial breaks. I would gladly give $ to heel H alive.

  13. Katie says:

    I hope they bring back Hannibal! It’s such a good show. The acting is amazing. I hope Amazon picks it up.

  14. carri says:

    I think this show would fit in well on FX :)

  15. Karen W. says:

    Would like further details on their contract with amazon because if it really is going to knock Netflix out the the running I see that as a problem, Amazon exclusives simply don’t have the production values of Netflix shows.

    While I pretty much loathe House of Cards (despite my love of Kevin Spacey) there is no denying the production values are top notch.

  16. Please put it on Netflix first the story is not done yet Bryan Fuller plz go with Netflix shoud have been on there in the first place

  17. winchesterasylum says:

    Ultimately, I’d simply wanted it to be saved, so as a fan I’ll follow it anywhere.

  18. Haley says:

    A&E would be an interesting choice, though I’d have reservations. On the one hand, they don’t seem to mind incest with Bates Motel and some violent scenes, so the homoeroticism that fans love so much wouldn’t have to be toned down and could be fully explored on this network. However, the violence on Hannibal isn’t just violence, it’s extremely explicit and I haven’t seen anything like that on A&E so I’d worry that part of the show would have to be toned down which would mean turning into another show. I’d rather see it stream somewhere free of these kinds of concerns – so either Amazon, Hulu, or Netflix. As far as Amazon goes, if they are not interested, I wish they’d allow Netflix to get in on the action. And as far as networks are concerned, I’d wish NBC would pitch it around to it’s other networks (Syfy, USA, etc) although again the violence content on these networks pales in comparison I’d worry about the artistic freedom Fuller would have…

  19. Anne says:

    Wow, a Hannibal movie? That’d be great too! But I really think that Netflix could do a better job here, something that would let fans happy (and considering that Hannibal has a really avid and faithful fanbase, Netflix could make a huge profit from that)…

  20. buffalobilly says:

    i tried i tried i tried
    couldnt git thru a single episode.
    so artsy it waz painful….

  21. giantslor says:

    Given that Lifetime owns the “Silence of the Lambs” rights, and sister network A&E has “Bates Motel,” could we possibly see “Hannibal” moving to A&E for a Bates/Hannibal block, and possibly work with Lifetime to be able to tell the Clarice Starling storyline?

    • CCV says:

      I watch Bates. I like it. It’s not in the same league as Hannibal and, as such, A&E would ruin it. I always though FX was the perfect place for it–especially with Landgraf, who is always willing to keep low rated shows on the air if they artistically warrant it–but I fear it might complicate their efforts to keep Americans running, another criminally low rated show that deserves so much more.

      • giantslor says:

        I don’t think Fuller would allow A&E to ruin it. I mean, it’s been on freaking NBC for three seasons.

    • Dee Cee says:

      Lifetime would ruin Hannibal as it ruins most things. Netflix and/or Amazon could do it justice. It is a brilliant beautifully crafted series, financiers / distributors should leave as much of the crew in place as possible.

  22. Hua says:

    Please let there be another season! It’s too early for a genius show like Hannibal to be canceled; at least give it one more full season!!

  23. Well Netflix here is a huge chance for you to land a show with some rabid fans and present it in a way NBC never could: At any time the fans choose to watch it.

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