AceShowbiz - CBS' highly-anticipated "The Silence of the Lambs" sequel "Clarice" won't mention killer Hannibal Lecter.
The show picks up just one year after the events of the iconic Thomas Harris novel and the movie of the same name but, according to executive producer Alex Kurtzman, they were "banned" from even mentioning the character, played by Anthony Hopkins.
He tells Entertainment Weekly the rights to all of the characters in Thomas Harris' novels are split between MGM and The Dino De Laurentiis Company, which produced "The Silence of the Lambs", meaning the show couldn't obtain license to feature Lecter.
"I'm still trying to understand how the rights are divided. But it's been quite liberating because we have no interest in writing about Hannibal - not because we didn't love the films and the show, but because it was done so well by so many people that it didn't feel fresh for us," Kurtzman said.
While the first season won't feature the title character on the hunt for a serial killer, he teases there will be "an entity that represents something that we deal with in our lives all the time."
"It's a more expanded, nuanced, complicated, and topical version of a serial killer," Kurtzman added.
Series co-creator Jenny Lumet adds the show will also explore the "white gaze," explaining, "There's no 'black best friend' thing going on here, that would be intolerable to us."
"We take a big bite into the relationship between a young black woman and a young white woman who are best friends, and have each other's complete support, yet have never had the conversation about the differences in their lives - and Clarice has a lot of catching up to do."
"Clarice", starring Rebecca Breeds in the title role, debuts on 11 February (21) on CBS.