Before 'Silence of the Lambs', before 'Red Dragon', Hannibal Lecter was a brilliant psychiatrist in the employ of the FBI. His task: to help an unusually gifted criminal profiler, Will Graham, who is haunted by his ability to see into the minds of serial killers. After a particularly grueling case hunting a serial killer known as the Minnesota Shrike, Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) threatens to walk away. Jack Crawford (Laurence Fishburne), the head of the FBI's Behavioral Science Unit, desperately needs Will on his team to break the tough cases, so he enlists Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Mads Mikkelsen), to ensure Will's mental well-being. Unbeknownst to Will, Hannibal also has a particular insight into these horrible crimes and the psychopaths who commit them. As Will hunts down brutal killers, he is unknowingly sitting across from the most gifted killer of them all.