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After winning an Oscar for her performance as Clarice Starling in Silence of the Lambs, Jodie Foster decided not to reprise the role in the sequel. When asked about it in an interview with Total Film, she said

The official reason I didn’t do Hannibal is I was doing another movie, Flora Plum... So I get to say, in a nice, dignified way, that I wasn’t available when that movie was being shot... I saw Hannibal. I won’t comment.

Obviously this implies that she didn't like something about the movie. But what was it exactly?

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1 Answer 1

No, it doesn't imply she didn't like something because that is not correctly what she said.

The official reason I didn’t do Hannibal is I was doing another movie, Flora Plum [a long-cherished project that has yet to be shot]. So I get to say, in a nice, dignified way, that I wasn’t available when that movie was being shot. But Clarice meant so much to Jonathan and I, she really did, and I know it sounds kind of strange to say but there was no way that either of us could really trample on her.

It is only a second question asked to her about whether she watched Hannibal she said

[whispers] I saw Hannibal. I won’t comment.

This is obviously her being respectful of the movie and leaving her comments about what she thought the direction of the movie should have gone.

There's been so much weird blood about the film. I wanted them to make their movie. I paid $7.50 to see it and you know, go with God. None of us [Foster, LAMBS director Jonathan Demme and writer Ted Tally) really commented on their parade, and no matter how much De Laurentiis commented on my parade, I wasn't going to start talking about him in the press.

Source: http://www.mania.com/foster-finally-talks-hannibal-controversy_article_32748.html

The only guess anyone can take, is how Clarice developed in Hannibal as compared to Silence of the Lambs.

Why did she not take the role? It is just as the quote you gave said, she was previously occupied with her own movie. When she says dignified, I think she is talking about the fact that she is proud of her project Flora Plum.

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Yes, it sounds like a dignified and reserved way for Ms. Foster to have declined to comment. One can interpret her reply as they will, but what she actually said still stands. I was personally left with the impression that she wasn't too impressed with Hannibal, even though she did not say those words. I also wonder if she is uninterested in being part of sequels, as many people consider them too risky to be good, and perhaps she would not consider a sequel as a wise career move. Ms. Foster is a very intelligent, talented woman and she carefully applies those qualities to wise career choices. –  Tarnation Apr 30 at 19:53

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