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Hannibal Lecter

Ганнибал Лектер

Hannibal Lecter (born Hannibal Lectеr) is a fictional character who appeared in four novels by Thomas Harris and in their screen versions .

Appears in the novels "Red Dragon", "Silence of the Lambs", "Hannibal" and "Hannibal: Ascent".

First appearing in the novel "Red Dragon" as a brilliant forensic psychiatrist, a serial killer and cannibal. He exhibits the features of a psychopath, but has an outstanding intellect. Intellect brings him fame in medical circles, and cannibalism among ordinary people.

The first actor to play this role was Scottishman Brian Cox in the 1986 movie The Hunter for Men, based on the novel The Red Dragon.

But Welsh actor Anthony Hopkins created the most recognizable image of Dr. Lecter. Hopkins appeared in this role in the films The Silence of the Lambs (1991), Hannibal (2001) and The Red Dragon (2002). In 1992, Anthony Hopkins was awarded the Oscar for Best Actor for the role of Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs, although he only appears on screen for 16 minutes.

The role of the young Lecter in the 2007 film “Hannibal: Ascent” was performed by French actor Gaspard Uliel.

In 2003, the American Film Institute named Dr. Hannibal Lecter, performed by Anthony Hopkins, the number one villain of all times.

In the television series "Hannibal" production channel NBC Hannibal Lecter played the Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen. In 2014, Mikkelsen received the Saturn Award for this role.

Appetite comes with eating / It's an acquired taste.


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Hannibal is a man of average build and height, but he often goes and presents himself in ways that seem taller. Brunette, but in some places looks gray, and the hair is not so thick. Nose with imperial crook. Eyes of an unusual maroon color. Because of the light reflected from them, it sometimes seems that they light up like two red sparks. Small white teeth. Neat lips. Wrinkles around the eyes, indicating frequent smiles.

There are multiple scars on the body: on the skull; on the neck from the chain, frozen to the skin; just below the ribs of the arrows, stuck once Will Graham; two bullet wounds to the left clavicle and abdomen; on his left hand, remaining after removing the sixth finger ( Hannibal Lecter suffered from a rare form of polydactyly ).

In the novels of Harris and in their films, Lecter is a highly educated, culturally and intellectually developed psychiatrist and surgeon, at the same time a monstrous serial killer practicing cannibalism on his victims. He is on a par with such grandiose villains as Satan in John Milton's “Lost Paradise” and Professor James Moriarty from the works of Arthur Conan Doyle about Sherlock Holmes.

In the novels of Harris, Hannibal Lecter had polydactyly, namely its most rare form. There were six fingers on the doctor’s left hand, with the sixth, middle, exactly copying his fellow.

Harris said that the creation of the character was inspired by a prison doctor from the Mexican city of Monterrey in the state of Nuevo Leon. This became known from the writer's preface to the new edition of Silence of the Lambs, dedicated to the 25th anniversary of the book. Nevertheless, Harris did not disclose the name of the doctor, preferring to call him by the fictitious name "Dr. Salazar."

Harris said that he met with Dr. Salazar in prison, where he came to interview an American prisoner convicted of the murder of three young men. Harris does not remember the exact date of the meeting - presumably it happened in 1964. Harris met Dr. Salazar after he saved the life of the criminal who the writer was about to interview. The prisoner was wounded while trying to escape from prison, but the prison doctor managed to cure him. The writer recalls how he talked with Dr. Salazar about a wounded American prisoner and children's psychological trauma that could push him to a murder. “Dr. Salazar was a small, flexible man with auburn hair. He was very calm, and there was a certain elegance in him, ”says Harris. This conversation served as a prototype for the scene in the book The Silence of the Lambs, where Hannibal Lecter asks the FBI trainee Clarissa Starling about her childhood injuries.

Assumptions were made that the real name of the doctor was Alfredo Ballí Treviño, he was released from prison in the 1980s and died in 2009 or 2010.

In his comments on the DVD of The Silence of the Lambs, Hopkins claimed that his character’s style was strongly influenced by the sinister computer HAL 9000 from Stanley Kubrick’s movie Space Odyssey 2001, and he borrowed an unblinking look from the documentary interrogations of Charles Manson.

According to the British edition of Empire, Lecter performed by Hopkins ranks twenty-first in the ranking of the 100 greatest movie characters.

The IGN website ranked Hannibal Lecter in 6th place on the list of "25 best villains in horror films."

In 2016, Rolling Stone magazine placed Lecter from the Hannibal series on the 18th position on his list of the 40 Greatest TV Villains of All Time.


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The psychological wounds received in childhood practically left nothing human in Hannibal. He always maintains icy calm, both externally and internally, even during the most brutal murders.

Dr. Lecter is always careful about everything. He likes to talk with a good conversationalist. The bad one will most likely later go on as the main dish for the next dinner party.

Hannibal does not tolerate bad manners and failure to fulfill his duties (the case with the flutist is an obvious confirmation).

Gentleman. Esthete. Pedant. He is fond of the Renaissance. Refinement and sophistication is felt in everything.

Persistent and tireless, Hannibal never gives up, knows how to wait and always gets his way.

It has a specific sense of humor, because of which the object of the joke does not always understand its essence, because of its own stupidity or lack of any body.

Skills and abilities

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Hannibal is always in good physical shape. He has a photographic memory, excellent hearing, aggravated charm and very refined taste. Little susceptible to pain. The hemispheres of his brain are able to work independently of each other (as happens in some cases of head injuries when communication between the hemispheres is interrupted). Hannibal is able to simultaneously follow several moves of thought, without being distracted from one of them, and one of such moves is always chosen by him for his own entertainment.

He also handles well with both firearms and cold weapons, from which he prefers the stylet.

As a doctor of medicine, Hannibal has the broadest knowledge in physiology and pharmacology. He is able to brainwash people with psychotropic substances, or open the skull and cut out a certain part of the brain of a still alive person who can even taste the contents of his own head.

The talent and education of a psychologist and psychiatrist, coupled with incredible cunning, allow Hannibal to skillfully calculate people, play on feelings, provoke and manipulate their actions.

In addition, it is worth noting that Hannibal superbly draws and prepares.


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  • As your mom will tell you, and as mine told me, there is nothing more interesting than trying a new one.
  • So how will it be? With or without guts? (Guts outward or inward ...?)
  • Would they give you a medal? And you hung it on the wall to remind you of your courage and integrity. To see this, just look in the mirror.
  • Nothing happened to me. I happened.
  • What a terrible and incomprehensible world we live in. Neither cruelty nor wisdom.
  • Quid pro quo, Clarissa.
  • I do not like rude.
  • Once I tried to interview a census agent. I ate his liver with green peas and drank some superb Chianti.
  • I must admit, I'm seriously thinking about eating ... your spouse.
  • Rudeness is like an epidemic.
  • Sometimes you think that everything is fine, but someone already digs your grave.
  • I'd love to chat with you a little longer, Clarissa, but I have an old friend for lunch today ...
  • In my free time I prefer to be rude. On the free pasture.
  • People will think that we have a novel ...

Hannibal Lecter had a real prototype - Dr. Salazar

Томас Харрис

In 1981, writer Thomas Harris published his second novel, The Red Dragon, revealing the world to Hannibal Lecter. Then came three more novels, five films and one series - the world was obsessed with a charismatic cannibal killer. But the question remained: did Harris come up with Lecter or did he use the real person’s character as a basis? And if so, to whom?

In 2013, the 25th anniversary of the novel The Silence of the Lambs, Harris said that Lecter’s prototype was a murderer from Mexico named Dr. Salazar. They met in the 1960s when Harris, who was a journalist at the time, was collecting material about the American killer Dykis Escue Simmons, who was serving a sentence in Monterrey prison.

Harris learned that Simmons was trying to escape and was seriously injured by a gunshot. He was taken to Dr. Salazar, who had an operation and saved the criminal. Intrigued, Harris wanted to interview the surgeon, deciding that Salazar was a prison doctor. The assumption is quite reasonable - Salazar had a medical education and even his own office in prison.

They started the conversation, but Harris soon lost the thread of the conversation. Salazar began to ask questions about the victims of Simmons and to lecture Harris about the nature of the torment. When the interview was over, Harris asked the warden about Salazar’s medical career. He replied: "Doctor? Yes it is a killer! He is a surgeon, so he was able to pack his victim in a tiny box. Salazar will never leave this place - he is crazy. "

It is believed that his real name Dr. Salazar - Alfredo Bally Trevino. Trevino was a surgeon and a convicted murderer. But what could a good doctor do to get behind bars for life?

Альфредо Балли Тревино
Alfredo Bally Trevino

On October 9, 1959, Trevino and his lover, Jesus Castillo Rangel, had a fight. Whatever the cause of the quarrel, Trevino stunned Rangel, cut his throat with a scalpel, cut it into small pieces and put them in a box. Then Trevino, with the help of an accomplice, buried the remains, but in the end, he was caught and sentenced to death.

As a result, the sentence was replaced with imprisonment, and in 2000, the surgeon was released from prison. Until his death in 2009, Trevino continued his medical practice and helped the poor. Whether he was a cannibal is unknown. More likely no than yes.

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