Hannibal Lecter is a fictional character in a series of suspense novels by Thomas Harris.
Lecter was introduced in the 1981 thriller novel Red Dragon as a forensic psychiatrist and cannibalistic serial killer. The novel and its sequel, The Silence of the Lambs, feature Lecter as one of the primary antagonists after the two serial killers in both novels. In the third novel, Hannibal, Lecter becomes a protagonist. His role as the antihero occurs in the fourth novel, Hannibal Rising, which explores his childhood and development into a serial killer.
The first film adapted from the Harris novels was Manhunter (based on Red Dragon) which features Brian Cox as Lecter, spelled "Lecktor". In 1991, Anthony Hopkins won an Academy Award for his portrayal of the character in The Silence of the Lambs. He would reprise the role in Hannibal in 2001 and in a second adaptation of Red Dragon made in 2002 under the original title.
In February 2012, NBC gave a series order to Hannibal, a television adaptation of Red Dragon to be written and executive-produced by Bryan Fuller. Mads Mikkelsen plays Lecter, opposite Hugh Dancy as Will Graham
All media in which Lecter appears portray him as intellectually brilliant, cultured and sophisticated, with refined tastes in art, music and cuisine. He is well-educated and speaks several languages. He is frequently depicted preparing gourmet meals from his victims' flesh, the most famous example being his admission in the film adaptation of The Silence of the Lambs that he once ate a census taker's liver "with fava beans and a nice Chianti". He is deeply offended by rudeness, and frequently kills people who have bad manners. Prior to his capture and imprisonment, he was a member of Baltimore, Maryland's social elite, and a sitting member of the Baltimore Philharmonic Orchestra's board of directors.
In The Silence of the Lambs, Lecter is described through protagonist Clarice Starling's eyes: "small, sleek, and in his hands and arms she saw wiry strength like her own". The novel also reveals that Lecter's left hand has a condition called mid ray duplication polydactyly, i.e. a duplicated middle finger. In Hannibal, he performs plastic surgery on his own face on several occasions, and removes his extra digit. Lecter's eyes are a shade of maroon, and reflect the light in "pinpoints of red".He has small white teeth and dark, slicked-back hair with a widow's peak. He also has a keen sense of smell; in The Silence of the Lambs, he is able to identify through a plate glass window the brand of perfume that Starling wore the day before.
Today, you are challenged to draw Dr. Hannibal Lecter for about 30 minutes!
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