R | | Crime, Drama, Thriller
A young FBI cadet must receive the help of an incarcerated and manipulative cannibal killer to help catch another serial killer, a madman who skins his victims.
Originally, the film was to open with Clarice Starling and a male FBI agent in the middle of a drug bust. They were to burst into the room and make several arrests, then the bust would be revealed as a training exercise. Jodie Foster was able to convince Jonathan Demme to change the scene, because it had been done so many times before. Foster came up with the idea of opening with Starling running through the assault course. The drug bust training idea was still used, but after Clarice's first conversation with Lecter.
Starling! Starling! Crawford wants to see you in his office.
Clarice Starling: Thank you, sir.
The film refers to "iron sulfide, also known as 'fool's gold'." Iron sulfide, more specifically, iron (II) sulfide or FeS, is an unstable chemical compound that's usually brown or black. The fool's gold they refer to is commonly known as pyrite, and its proper name is iron (II) disulfide (FeS2). Even if Agent Starling and Dr. Lecter knew enough about chemistry to know the chemical composition of fool's gold, she would have known it as either pyrite or iron disulfide.
The ending scene continues throughout the entire credits
For the TV network version, Miggs says to Clarice 'I can smell your scent' instead of 'I can smell your c*nt'. Lecter's reply "I myself cannot" is omitted.
$13,766,814 (USA) (15 February 1991)