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30 years of the “silence of the lambs” | Discover ALL the incarnations of Hannibal Lecter and Clarice Starling on the screens



In 2021, the classic Le silence des agneaux ends 30 years of release. The film is one of the most beloved of all time in the opinion of moviegoers, and in the opinion of the general public, it is in the top 25 on IMDB. A box office hit earning 14 times its budget and garnering 96% critical approval on Rotten Tomatoes, Silence of the Lambs can be considered the most prestigious horror film with doses of horror from the outside. history of cinema. Do not believe? How about remembering your still-standing Oscar record.

In 1992, in addition to the statuette for best film, The Silence of the Lambs also won the so-called Big Five (only 3 films have such an honor): the awards for best director (for the late Jonathan Demme), best actress (Jodie Foster), Best Actor (veteran Anthony Hopkins, who this year received his second My Father statuette) and Best-Fit Screenplay – leaving only the sound and editing nominations on the way. The film, of course, is the adaptation of the Thomas Harris novel, and despite its status, it wasn’t the author’s first chapter in the story, or even the psychopath Hannibal Lecter’s first appearance on Grand screen.

For you who are a fan of The Silence of the Lambs and wish to deepen a little the universe of this charismatic and learned cannibal, Dr. Hannibal Lecter, we offer you this new article, the aim of which is to follow the other appearances of the duo of protagonists – in addition to Lecter, also his counterpart, FBI agent Clarice Starling – this Oscar winner who is a true cinematic phenomenon. Find out below.

If The Great Silence of the Lambs celebrates its 30th anniversary of release in 2021, the universe created by Thomas Harris on the pages celebrates another cinematic anniversary this year. Hannibal Lecter’s first film appearance celebrates 35 years of his debut. Hunter of Assassins, or Manhunter in the original, debuted in August 1986 (arriving only in 1988 in Brazil). The film marked director Michael Mann’s third feature film (Fogo Contra Fogo, 1995), but lived to become a resounding box office failure, resurfacing today with cult work.

In this production, Hannibal, played by Brian Cox, is captured by Agent Will Graham (William Petersen). In prison, the cannibal is enlisted to help him capture another serial killer known as “the tooth fairy”. Thanks to this synopsis, it was possible to realize that the feature film was remade in the forms of the much more famous Red Dragon (2002) – moreover that the plot is very similar to that of The Silence of the Lambs. A curiosity is that Hannibal’s last name here was mentioned as “Lecktor”. Go figure..

The famous Italian producer Dino De Laurentiis supported the film adaptation of Assassin’s Hunter and found the donkeys in the water, having to pay for the loss of the work. So when the opportunity arose to bring this new book by Thomas Harris to the movies, De Laurentiis flatly refused. Well, it can be said that the renowned entrepreneur was not in his best phase, since the second assault became everything the first should have been and was not: box office hits, reviews, Oscar record (owner of the so-called Big Five) and a timeless movie for fans.

And all it took was a complete change in the management team. In the form of Anthony Hopkins, Hannibal Lecter became one of the most memorable characters of the seventh art, in addition to saving the career of the actor. Apart from that, we had the introduction of Clarice Starling (Jodie Foster), a more human and charismatic protagonist – whose ties to the relationship with the psychopath are the backbone of the work’s success.

Another film from the franchise which celebrates its anniversary in 2021. The long-awaited sequel to Silence of the Lambs turns 20. Released ten years after the classic Oscarizado, some elements were missing to be a full party. Jonatham Demme did not return to directing and was replaced by the equally talented Ridley Scott. But the most felt absence was that of the psychopath’s counterpart, leaving the dynamic lame.

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Anthony Hopkins agreed to return to the role that saved his career, but Jodie Foster was not interested in taking over older Clarice, choosing to join David Fincher’s The Panic Room (2002) project after Nicole Kidman left due of an accident. So, Julianne Moore, an equally competent actress, arrived to replace him. With Hannibal free to live the good life in Europe, which implies continuing his, say, private cooking, Clarice is in charge of unraveling the fate of her “old friend”. All of this is happening just as the career of the promising new agent of the past falls out of favor ten years later.

When “lost the boat” to the success of O Silêncio dos Innocentes, producer Dino De Laurentiis decided to chase the loss and bought the rights to the other adaptations of Thomas Harris’s books. So, ten years after the Oscar winner, he threw out the above object, Hannibal – but without Jodie Foster, the lead actress, returning. Making the investment profitable, the Italian businessman made the following year of Hannibal a remake of Hunter of Assassins, a flop of the past, now with Anthony Hopkins’ presence as cannibal Lecter, and a first casting at the head of the production. While not as original as The Silence of the Lambs, Red Dragon was a good investment in this universe and served to revisit old friends and places well known to fans.

Hannibal – The Origin of Evil

In Hollywood or elsewhere, when you invest heavily in an idea, it usually comes to the last drop. So, five years after Red Dragon – the remake of Hunter of Assassins – De Laurentiis decided to tell the story of the cannibal’s origin in his youth. Necessary? No, but he would anyway. For this, he demanded a text from Thomas Harris himself to support the production. When the author refused, De Laurentiis was adamant: “I will do it even without you, so you better be with you”.

It was just enough to get the creator to move and not let anyone else venture into the pet stories and characters. Here, no Anthony Hopkins, who lost a lot of points in the feature film, really looking like a slot machine. In the role of the protagonist, this time, Hannibal took the forms of young Frenchman Gaspard Ulliel, giving the character a more European feel. The thing behind these original movies is that we don’t want or need to see how the big bad guys in cinema got to where we first met them. Our imagination can handle this message.

In 2010, the great Italian producer Dino De Laurentiis passed away, but his production boat was hit by his wife Martha De Laurentiis, 35 years younger than him. So when a Hannibal-focused series set before what we see in Hunter of Assassins and Red Dragon (but many years after The Origin of Evil) left the role in 2013, Dino was no longer with us – but her name, which titled her producer, she continued to hold the rights to the character. For the immense challenge of replacing the monster Anthony Hopkins on paper (which hadn’t worked out well with Ulliel in 2007), it required an actor of sufficient reputation and prestige.

Enter none other than Danish Mads Mikkelsen, known to the film community as one of the best performing performers and recently released from Thomas Vinterberg’s hit The Hunt (2012). The program uses recurring characters in the world of the psychopath. It was however the first invested in a history of the character without the participation of a text of the creator Thomas Harris. Despite its enormous prestige, the series only lasted three seasons, having been canceled in 2015. Despite this, it is still hailed as one of the best series of all time in the opinion of fans and has an overall average. 92% approval by the specialized press. . You will understand what is going on in the minds of these TV channels.

Most recent investment in the world of characters created by author Thomas Harris in literature. And if Hannibal – The Series left out the creator (who had no involvement in the project for the first time in the adaptations), this new program also excludes the production of De Laurentiis – for the first time since 2001. Unlike to all the other adaptations of this universe, where the flagship has always been the presence of Hannibal Lecter as the main attraction, for the first time an adaptation resolves to invest in its counterpart, the FBI agent Clarice Starling, who even wins the name of the program.

Before Clarice, with whom Hannibal maintains a respectful relationship and a certain platonic passion, Agent Will Graham was on an equal footing with the big bad, in particular being responsible for his capture. Graham was played by William Petersen in Hunter of Assassins and by Edward Norton in the Red Dragon remake. The character returned to appear as one of the protagonists of the Hannibal series in the forms of Hugh Dancy. Already Clarice, during her first appearance on the screen, won the forms of Jodie Foster, who won the Oscar for best actress for the role.

Ten years later, the star refused to return, to be replaced by the equally talented Julianne Moore, determined to bring a more mature Clarice to life in Hannibal (2001). Now who takes responsibility is young Rebecca Breeds (from The Originals series). The option here is to step back in time, centering the plot just a year after the events seen in The Silence of the Lambs – which promises to make nostalgic folks even more interested in the closeness of the beloved film. The first season is on the CBS network and aired 7 episodes out of a total of 12.

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