10. In shooting the final confrontation between Dollarhyde and Graham, actor Tom Noonan had to lie in a pool of stage blood for several hours as the crew worked on other shots. After all this time, the stage blood dried into a thick, cement-like adhesive that all but fused Noonan to the carpet.
9. Richard Gere, Mel Gibson and Paul Newman were considered for the role of Will Graham.
8. Michael Mann’s direction to Brian Cox about playing Hannibal Lecktor was to play him like a British public schoolboy. Cox based his performance on his then 15-year-old son who was attending public school at the time.
7. David Lynch was the first director attached to the movie, but he eventually left the project.
6. The studio wanted Michael Mann to re-team with Don Johnson, the star of Mann’s show Miami Vice (1984), but Mann wanted William Petersen who he had worked with on Thief (1981)
5. Michael Mann had initially considered fellow filmmaker William Friedkin for the part of Hannibal Lecktor, but when Brian Dennehy – also a prospective Hannibal – insisted that Mann see Scotsman Brian Cox in the acclaimed 1984 off-Broadway production of “Rat in the Skull, ” Mann was instantly won over by Cox’s award-winning performance.
4. Tom Noonan (Dollarhyde) spent many hours in make-up so that artists could paint fake tattoos on his back and torso modeled after William Blake’s “Great Red Dragon” paintings. Though Noonan appeared with the tattoos in publicity photographs (available in a Special Edition DVD), director Michael Mann concluded that the tattoos were too “over the top,” and discarded the idea.
3. , Tom Noonan (Dollarhyde) said that he avoided all contact with cast members in order to heighten the isolation and tension between himself and other people, particularly William Petersen (Graham).
2. The film was originally going to be entitled “Red Dragon”, the same name as the novel. However, when Year of the Dragon (1985) became a box office failure, Dino De Laurentiis decided to avoid a “dragon” title.
1. This is the only Hannibal movie where his last name is spelled Lecktor. In all future movies, it’s spelled Dr. Hannibal Lecter.
Bill Burns joined the Horror News Network staff in 2014. Bill Burns grew up in the 70's and 80's, the second Golden Age of Horror. His mind was warped by John Carpenter, H.P. Lovecraft, In Search Of..., and the Man, Myth, and Magic series of books.