In the wake of the announcement that NBC are set to make a TV series set before the events of Red Dragon called Hannibal and Lifetime are developing a Clarice Starling show, we thought we would publish ten pieces of juicy trivia you might not know about this tasty 1991 Oscar winning thriller.
1. Oscar Royalty
Despite being a thriller/ horror – categories which are not renowned for being successful at the Oscars, The Silence of the Lambs remains one of only three films to win the Big 5 at the Oscars (Best Film, Director, Screenplay, Actor and Actress). The other two are One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest and It Happened One Night.
This certainly contradicted the arguments put forward by critics one year earlier when they said the reason Goodfellas lost out on the gold was because of its violent content. The scenes of Lecter beating the police officer to within an inch of his life and the scene where he removed the skin of another man’s face from his own are far more horrific and gory than anything in Scorsese’s masterpiece.
Was this a reactionary tactic from the Oscars to silence its critics? Was Dances with Wolves more worthy of Oscar gold than Goodfellas? Was it the case that the opposition in 1992 (frontrunners JFK, Prince of Tides and Beauty and the Beast) was not strong enough? Or is it simply a matter of Silence of the Lambs being a great piece of cinema through and through and being worthy of the most sought after prize in cinema?
2. Pounds of Flesh
It’s common film trivia that Robert De Niro set a record for weight gained by an actor to play a role. De Niro piled on more than sixty pounds to play the Raging Bull Jake Lamotta, for which he quite rightly won the best actor Oscar for what is perhaps the greatest performance of all time. Equally as ballyhooed is Rene Zelwegger piling on over twenty pounds for Bridget Jones.
However, Brooke Smith who plays the abducted senator’s daughter Catherine Martin, piled on twenty five pounds to play the small role.