In this wonderful quick-fire Q&A with Larry King, the great ANTHONY HOPKINS describes how he figured out how to play psychotic serial killer Dr Hannibal Lecter.
Playing Hannibal Lecter was my favourite because it was so easy
Larry King replies in amazement
Yeh dead easy. It’s a trick. The first 20 minutes is built up describing this monster, and then she goes to the prison and says “What’s he like?” and the governor of the prison says “Oh he’s a monster!” So it’s all built up there’s this monster in a cage somewhere. Thing is, do the opposite. Play NOT a monster”
Playing the opposite of what’s expected is always a more interesting choice.