Hannibal Blogger a Young Rebekah Brooks


WEDNESDAY, APRIL 10, 2013 12:42 PM EDT


In both looks and actions, Lara Jean Chorostecki has real-life inspiration for her character in Hannibal.

Chorostecki plays Freddie Lounds, a trashy blogger who stops at nothing to get her story.

"Bryan Fuller (who developed Hannibal) compares Freddie to having the ambition of Rebekah Brooks, a young Rebekah Brooks," Chorostecki says.

Rebekah Brooks is an infamous ex-newspaper editor and one of the key figures accused in the phone-hacking scandal that has rocked the British media.

"Actually, once you know what Freddie looks like, put a picture of Rebekah Brooks next to her," Chorostecki says.

"I mean, I am a redhead. But the hair was directly modeled after Rebekah Brooks."

All's fair in dipping into modern times for Hannibal, which debuted last week and is airing Thursdays on NBC and City. The series is set in the present, even though it technically is a prequel to the 1991 Academy Award-winning film The Silence of the Lambs.

The Freddie character does not appear in The Silence of the Lambs. However, when it was spelled "Freddy" instead of "Freddie," the character did exist - as a man - in related projects such as the 1986 film Manhunter (where he was played by Steven Lang) and the 2002 film Red Dragon (where he was played by Philip Seymour Hoffman).

"In the novels the character is quite despised as well, he's quite sleazy," says Chorostecki, whose TV resume includes roles in Copper, Camelot and Dan For Mayor. "But he's more schlubby at the same time, too, if I can use that word. Schlubby is just the best word I can think of to describe it.

"And passive in a way. Hoffman's version is amazing, but passive through the first half of the movie. This Freddie is a lot more in-your-face. That's the spin (Fuller) has put on her.

"She really doesn't have many morals, does she? I don't think Freddie has much of a life. Someone joked about that on set. They said, 'Do you think Freddie has any friends?' I don't think she'd have much time. I think she's so focused, really, in a kind of sociopathic way on herself that I don't know if anyone would be friends with her."

Without giving anything away, there's a great scene in this week's episode of Hannibal featuring Freddie and Dr. Hannibal Lecter, played by Mads Mikkelsen.

"It's interesting, because Freddie is not in the least bit intimidated by Jack Crawford (the head of the FBI's behavioural science unit, played by Laurence Fishburne)," Chorostecki says. "But (Dr. Lecter) just kind of sees Freddie for what she is, and it's terrifying.

"He sees this little girl who is making her way up with all this pretence around her."

Hmmm, Lara Jean Chorostecki's Freddie Lounds is sounding even more like a young Rebekah Brooks.

"I love playing her, of course," Chorostecki says of Freddie. "But even I love to hate her."