Jodie Foster Explains Why She’ll Never Return As Clarice Starling

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It surely can’t be a coincidence that CBS’ procedural Clarice premiered almost exactly 30 years to the day that The Silence of the Lambs was released into theaters. As a result, awareness for Thomas Harris’ novel and its subsequent feature film adaptation is higher than it’s been for a long time, with Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster recently conducting a sit down interview where they took a deep dive into the production.

Riding on those coattails, Clarice drew in over four million viewers for the first episode, although the chances of the series maintaining those kind of numbers have dwindled significantly after critics were left cold on the small screen spinoff. Of course, the show can’t even name Dr. Lecter due to legal and contractual issues, but star Rebecca Breeds already faced a daunting task trying to follow in the footsteps of Jodie Foster’s Academy Award winning performance.

Julianne Moore attempted and failed to replicate Foster’s success in Ridley Scott’s Hannibal, and in a new interview, the original Clarice Starling explained that she’s still hurt about the studio moving forward on the Silence of the Lambs sequel without her involvement or the presence of  director Jonathan Demme, which is why she’ll never reprise the role.

“There’s been some stuff over the years about reprising Clarice, but both Jonathan and I were both disappointed not to do the sequel. I have never watched that one.”

The Silence of the Lambs - Clarice Starling 2

That’s certainly fair enough, and no matter how big of a hit Clarice turns out to be, in the eyes of most audiences, nobody will ever be able to dislodge Jodie Foster as the first name that comes to mind when you think of the dogged rookie FBI agent that pitted her wits against Hannibal Lecter and took down notorious serial killer Buffalo Bill for good measure.