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Is Clarice Canceled? Season 2 Release Date, Story & Updates

Clarice season 2 may not happen although The Silence of the Lambs spinoff has not been officially canceled. Produced by Alex Kurtzman and starring Rebecca Breeds as FBI Special Agent Clarice Starling, the mystery thriller was set in 1993, one year after the events of The Silence of the Lambs, and Clarice season 1 set Starling on a new path to uncover a vast conspiracy.

Clarice was recruited by the FBI's Violent Crimes Apprehension Program (ViCAP) because of her expertise in hunting serial killers. Starling uncovered an apparent string of serial murders but she quickly deduced that it wasn't the work of a serial killer but rather a complex conspiracy involving pregnant women who were murdered for speaking out against a powerful pharmaceutical company. Despite tensions with ViCAP's director, Paul Krendler (Michael Cudlitz), Attorney General Ruth Martin (Jayne Atkinson), and her own teammates, Clarice bravely pursued the truth with the help of her best friend, Ardelia Mapp (Devyn A. Tyler). Although she was placed in great personal danger, Clarice uncovered the plot concocted by Alastor Pharmaceuticals' fearsome billionaire owner, Nils Hagen (Peter McRobbie), and his son, Tyson Conway (Douglas Smith).

Related: What Clarice Reveals That Silence Of The Lambs Didn't

Despite Clarice's Silence of the Lambs pedigree, the series struggled to deliver ratings on CBS, and now, a behind-the-scenes conflict between the show's production companies looks to prevent Clarice from getting a season 2. Here's everything we know about why Clarice's future is in doubt.

While Clarice has not officially been canceled, it will not return to CBS in fall 2021. Clarice was the lowest-rated and least-watched show on the network. However, it did solid numbers streaming on Paramount+. Deadline reported that on May 14, Clarice was part of a deal that would bring Seal Team and Evil to become Paramount+ exclusives, but The Silence of the Lambs spinoff wasn't officially announced as jumping to the streaming service. The reasons why appear to be a financial dispute between CBS Studios/Paramount+ and MGM Studios, which co-produce Clarice.

In May, MGM Studios, which was announced to be in the process of being acquired by Amazon, walked away from the negotiating table, effectively killing Clarice's prospects of moving to Paramount+. The issues between CBS/Paramount and MGM reportedly involve the latter balking at a lesser deal in financing the series, Paramount+ asking for a reduced episode count, and the complication that Clarice becoming a Paramount+ exclusive prevents it from seeking an international off-network streaming deal (such as Clarice being made available on Amazon Prime outside the U.S.). While a last-minute deal could be reached to save Clarice, there haven't been any reported breakthroughs in negotiations so Clarice may be permanently silenced.

Clarice spent season 1 moving Agent Starling past the two serial killers she is indelibly associated with, Buffalo Bill and Hannibal Lecter. For legal reasons, Hannibal was never seen and only fleetingly mentioned on Clarice so the show focused on Starling coping with her lingering trauma over Buffalo Bill. In addition, Clarice used Thomas Harris' The Silence of the Lambs novel as a springboard to expand Starling's backstory, creating a family life more complicated than she revealed to Lecter. Further, Starling had falsely built her self-image based upon her dead father, and Clarice was repressing memories of his sins. Clarice season 2 would likely examine what this startling self-discovery would mean for Starling going forward.

Clarice also had tumultuous working relationships with ViCAP, whose respect and trust she eventually earned, as well as with Attorney General Ruth Martin and her daughter, Catherine (Marnee Carpenter), the traumatized last victim and survivor of Buffalo Bill. With the season 1 conspiracy solved by Agent Starling and ViCAP, there would be a new mystery to tackle in Clarice season 2, if it happens.

Next: Clarice Vs. Hannibal: Which Silence Of The Lambs Spinoff Is Better

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