Bryan Fuller’s Hannibal TV series will premiere on NBC in the foreseeable future. However, Lifetime has already begun development on another television show that will be centered around a famous character from Thomas Harris’ literature: FBI agent Clarice Starling.
MGM is producing the latter series, which is titled Clarice. The project is backed by Lifetime head honcho Nancy Dubuc (executive producer of The Kennedys), with the intention to replicate the success of Jennifer Love Hewittt’s The Client List – as another actress-headlined series on the channel.
According to TV Guide, Clarice will chronicle the experiences of its namesake after she has her first encounter with Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter and graduates from FBI academy. It sounds as though the TV series will therefore bridge the narrative gap between The Silence of the Lambs and Hannibal, following Clarice as she learns to cope with the everyday obstacles that come with the Fed lifestyle – and faces off against a resentful superior, who takes on the form of Department of Justice official Paul Krendler.
Such an approach would result in Clarice playing out as a relatively conventional crime drama/procedural, focused around a brilliant, crime-solving protagonist with a troubled psyche (a la the BBC’s Luther). That would also set the former apart from Fuller’s show, which will have more of a buddy dynamic at its core.
As indicated before, Dubuc is interested in producing more original television series on Lifetime “with strong female leads.” Hence, don’t be surprised if a young actress whose star is rapidly on the rise signs on to portray Clarice in the pilot – following in the footsteps of Jodie Foster from Silence of the Lambs (which snagged her an Oscar) and Julianne Moore’s performance from the Ridley Scott-directed Hannibal film adaptation.
NBC has yet to announce who will play the infamous Dr. Lecter in Fuller’s Hannibal TV series. No doubt, that’s partially due to the difficult nature of casting for the role – which so many people cannot disassociate from Sir Anthony Hopkins, despite the character having also previously been brought to life by people like Brian Cox in Manhunter and Gaspard Ulliel in Hannibal Rising (a younger version, in the latter case).
Foster’s turn as Clarice remains the most widely-admired cinematic incarnation of the heroine, but it’s never reached the icon status of Hopkins as Hannibal. It should also help that the Clarice TV series doesn’t look to feature the Dr. Lecter character in any explicit capacity – which could allow the show to better avoid comparisons to previous adaptations of Harris’ creations.
Of course, Clarice is going to be geared primarily towards the Lifetime viewing demographic. So, with that label, there also come certain “expectations,” good and bad.
Screen Rant will keep you up-to-date on any additional noteworthy developments concerning Clarice.
Source: TV Guide