original Hannibal

Has anyone seen the first movie in this series, Manhunter? In it, Hannibal is played by a different guy, who, IMO, is a far better Lecter than Anthony Hopkins. (I still use the line- “Dream much, Will?”- It’s right up there with “If you do, yoah a daisay.”)
I’ve seen this guy in other movies- I think he was one of the kings’ badguys in Rob Roy (title?).
Anyway, I’m wondering if anybody knows why they didn’t use him instead of AH in these last 2 movies.

T’anks all yew gis


I was just reading about this last night. The guy’s name is Brian Cox, and he wasn’t in Silence of the Lambs because he didn’t want to be. He said something about not wanting his career to revolve around playing Hannibal Lecter. Asked if he has any regrets now, he says no, except the money. :slight_smile:

Brian Cox (who was Killearn in Rob Roy) played Lecter in the 1986 Manhunter, based on the novel, Red Dragon.

Why was Cox not in Silence of the Lambs?
Well, the two movies were produced by totally different people, and directed by different people, so there was no personal tie-in between the two movies.

I don’t know that there was a specific reason for changing the lead. (Why did Clancy’s Jack Ryan character change from Alec Baldwin to Harrison Ford? Stuff happens in Hollywood.)

One reason for keeping Hopkins, now, is that Silence was a much bigger hit than Manhunter, and there is now a certain “name recognition” associated with it from the perspective of the money behind the films. I know that this does not always hold true (Hollywood not being any more logical than the rest of the world), but it does lend a certain weight to the decision.

Instead he went on to play people like Hermann Goring in “Nuremberg”.

I’m just curious, anyone know why Jodie Foster isn’t in the sequel now?

From what I heard Foster was not happy with the script. I am looking forward to seeing the movie, if only to see how they treat the book. IMHO, Manhunter was a good movie, but Silence of the Lambs is one of the all time greats. Has any movie since SOTL swept the 5 main categories at the acadamy awards?

About the hijacks:

IIRC, Baldwin wasn’t asked back for the subsequent flicks because he was roundly disliked on the set of Red October. Too bad, IMHO, because he was way better as Jack Ryan than Ford ever was.

And I’ve read that Jodi Foster is not in the new movie because (a) she didn’t like the book/original script, which led to (b) she wanted to work on some other project instead (a Leni Riefenstahl biopic that seems to be dead now). But Juliette Moore (sp?) is a hell of a good actress, and buzz is that she does a good job with the role.

From what I read she didn’t want to be pigeonholed into the Clarice Starling character. I don’t think anyone could be the new Hannibal but I think Julianne Moore will do okay.

not making this up, I just read that Ben Affleck is playing Jack Ryan in the new Clancy.
NO I don’t remember the cite, and NO i don’t know which book it is. I found this odd cuz IIRC, the JAck Ryan series was supposedly dead in the water for a while because due to some wierd leagal maneuvering Ford has right of first refusal on the character, and Clancy had casting veto, and wasn’t happy with Ford (thought he was too old) so they basically had a stalemate going for a while. I guess its been resolved somehow.
I just saw a think today on E or somewhere that actually piqued my interest in Hannibal after I had written the whole thins off as a cash cow. It looks (and I reserve the right to pretend I never said this) like it could actually be really good. The cinematography- at least- is striking.

well- it’s kind of a cult thing with me- Manhunter is one of my all time favs- along with Young Frankenstien, it’s one of the only movies I can think of that I think is better than the book.
And BC rocked in a subtle, quiet, deadly way as HL.
What a wierd thread, I figured.
Nobody’ll have any info, I figured.
Nobody’ll reply, I figured.
Thanks again for the info…

It’s true! I saw Affleck on Inside the Actors’ Studio on Bravo(?) last week and he says he is doing it. He even called Harrison Ford up to see if it would be OK with him and Ford wished him luck or something.

Little do you realize the power of the Straight Dope!
I had to say that at least once.


Brian Cox is pretty famous in Britain. He tends to crop up in the better-quality TV dramas. FWIW, I thought he was better as Lecter than Anthony Hopkins and Manhunter would probably have been the better film were it not for the intrusive soundtrack.

But more to the point:

Brian Cox is Scottish and Anthony Hopkins is Welsh. Though Anthony Hopkins has only a slight Welsh accent in his natural speaking voice, Cox has a detectable Scottish accent.

Lecter/Lector’s nationality is not disclosed in either of the first two novels, so there is no reason to assume he is anything other than American, since the books are set in America. In the third book it transpires he is Latvian or Lithuanian (I forget which).

So why did two different groups of film makers cast a British actor to play him and have the actors in question, neither of whom is English, play him as an Englishman?

I think I know the answer to this one, but I’d be interested to hear other people’s views.

There’s a book of Young Frankenstein?

Nope. The only other movies to do so were It Happened One Night in 1934 and One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest in 1975.

Who sez Lecter’s got an English accent in SotL? Sounded more like a non-specific psychologist/intellectual voice to me.

Regarding why Jodie Foster passed on Hannibal, my understanding was that she was not happy with the level of violence/gore in the script, nor with the book’s ending (though I’m not sure if she knew by the time she turned down the part that parts of the book’s ending would be changed for the movie).

As an aside, when Silence of the Lambs was being cast, Lou Gossett Jr lobbied very hard for the role.

And I’ve heard that Harrison Ford was offered the part of Jack Ryan in The Hunt for Red October but turned it down because he felt it would only be a supporting role to Sean Connery’s part. In the subsequent films, Jack Ryan was the main character, so Ford took the part.

Because all Englishmen, except Hugh Grant, are EVIL! Sheesh … haven’t you ever been to the movies before?

And I heard that Alec Baldwin was supposed to play Ryan in Patriot Games, but was starring in another project at the time they wanted to film (play or movie, I forget which). So they got Ford.

I like Ford as an actor, but IMHO, Baldwin made a better Ryan.

Actually, I have read all the books with Lecter, and I am pretty sure his ancestry was not mentioned until Hannibal. It’s quite possible that Harris had not fleshed the character out that far, or maybe had a different background in his mind that never got mentioned in the books, which he changed when writing Hannibal so he could add that bit of rather disturbing backstory to his character.