Hannibal’s recently concluded second season ended on a huge cliffhanger, I’ll say no more as spoiling a series as deliciously enjoyable as Hannibal would be a crime against television. Needless to say the events of the finale have left fans of the show desperate to find out what happens next. Digital Spy caught up with showrunner Bryan Fuller to find out what he’ll be serving up for season three, naturally this brought up the topic of character rights and the potential inclusion of Clarice Starling.

"Well, we tried to get Benjamin Raspail and Jame Gumb in the first season, so that we could tell that story and set up Silence of the Lambs. We tried to work out all manner of deals with MGM, like, 'We'll give you access to use the Hannibal Lecter character in your Silence of the Lambs spinoff show that you're developing, if you give us, or let us rent, Gumb and Raspail. 

And their response was, 'Under no circumstances, what's ours is ours and what's yours is yours.' So we can only hope that they either change their mind, or there's a new deal to be had that is mutually beneficial for both studios – something that would make it possible. So I'm going to keep trying on that, at every opportunity. They've already said no to me so many times that I'm not afraid of asking again!

Clarice is such a special character and a very iconic one, both from the literature and especially, in terms of pop culture, from Jodie Foster's fantastic performance. So it would be great to fold her into the Hannibal omelette, but time will tell.”

Last year Bryan Fuller revealed the seven year plan for the series would entail adapting Thomas Harris’s books (Red Dragon, Silence Of The Lambs and Hannibal) from season four onwards. This means that some form of deal will have to be reached to include Clarice when the time comes, otherwise Fuller may have to work the character out of the storyline. The seventh and presumably final season will continue past the books of Thomas Harris to bring the story to a close, those of you that have read the 1999 released book will know the shock ending was drastically altered in Ridley Scott’s 2001 movie adaptation.

Hannibal returns for a third helping of psychological horror early next year.