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The star of Hannibal has revealed how he’s come to like ‘big, dramatic’ knives – thanks to his fans.

Mads Mikkelsen plays the titular character in Hannibal, an NBC drama series based on the novels and films about infamous cannibal Hannibal Lecter.

The role has earned him a large army of followers, who have managed to get him interested in knives.

Speaking to film magazine Empire Mads explained how. “I occasionally get some strange requests,” he said, “and quite a few fans have sent me knives in the post which they want me to sign. They get them from an online knife shop, send them to me then get them back with ‘Hannibal’s’ signature on them.

“Some of the knives are big and dramatic and it’s actually quite interesting.”

The show obviously attracts devoted followers, because director Bryan Fuller has also had some strange requests from so called ‘Fannibals’.

“I get sent all sorts of wonderful things,” he said. “Everything from toilet seats to pillowcases to dolls.”