Clarice Starling
Clarice Starling
Gender: Female
Portrayed By: Jodie Foster
Julianne Moore
First Appearance: The Silence of the Lambs

Clarice M. Starling is a fictional character and the protagonist of the novels The Silence of the Lambs and Hannibal by Thomas Harris.

In the film adaptation of The Silence of the Lambs, she was played by Jodie Foster, while in the film adaptation of Hannibal, she was played by Julianne Moore.

Clarice Starling, as portrayed by Foster, was ranked the sixth greatest protagonist in film history on AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes and Villains, making her the highest-ranking heroine.


In the film adaptation of The Silence of the Lambs, Starling's role remains relatively unchanged from the book. However, the film adaptation of Hannibal significantly diverges from the novel's conclusion, with no reference being made to Lecter's attempts to brainwash her. Lecter does not attempt to feed Starling Krendler's brain (though he does feed portions of it to Krendler himself). Starling tries to apprehend Lecter, but he overpowers her which prompts Starling to handcuff herself to him in an attempt to keep him in the house before the imminent arrival of the police. Realizing that the only means of escape is to cut off Starling's hand, Lecter instead chooses to cut off his own hand and escapes, leaving Starling to explain the situation to the police. He is later seen on a plane, apparently fleeing the country again.

Although she won the Academy Award for Best Actress for playing Starling in The Silence of the Lambs, Jodie Foster decided not to reprise her role in Hannibal. Julianne Moore portrayed the character in the sequel, with Anthony Hopkins himself recommending her for the role after his previous experience working with her in the film Surviving Picasso.

Hannibal Lecter Films vte
Films ManhunterThe Silence of the LambsHannibalRed DragonHannibal Rising
Characters Hannibal LecterWill GrahamClarice StarlingFrancis DolarhydeBuffalo BillFrederick ChiltonJack CrawfordFreddy LoundsMason Verger

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