NBC has opted not to pick up a fourth season of Silence of the Lambs prequel series Hannibal.
The series, which premiered in April 2013, will complete its 13-episode third season starting Sept. 3.
Creator Bryan Fuller, who recently signed on to be co-showrunner on the Neil Gaiman's novel 'American Gods' as Starz series">recently greenlit adaption of American Gods on Starz, issued a statement thanking NBC for Hannibal's three-season run.
"NBC has allowed us to craft a television series that no other broadcast network would have dared, and kept us on the air for three seasons despite Cancelation Bear Chow ratings and images that would have shredded the eyeballs of lesser Standards & Practices enforcers," he said. "[NBC Entertainment exec] Jen Salke and her team have been fantastic partners and creatively supportive beyond measure. Hannibal is finishing his last course at NBC's table this summer, but a hungry cannibal can always dine again. And personally, I look forward to my next meal with NBC."
NBC released a statement saying it was "tremendously proud" of the series.
"Bryan and his team of writers and producers, as well as our incredible actors, have brought a visual palette of storytelling that has been second to none in all of television -- broadcast or cable. We thank [producers] Gaumont and everyone involved in the show for their tireless efforts that have made Hannibal an incredible experience for audiences around the world," the statement read.
Sources told The Hollywood Reporter that at the heart of the problem was a rights issue over the character of Clarice Starling, the star of Silence of the Lambs played by Jodi Foster. Fuller reportedly wanted to include the character in Season 4, but the rights weren't available.
It's possible Hannibal could find a home on another network or streaming service.
Hannibal stars Laurence Fishburne, Hugh Dancy, Mads Mikkelsen and Caroline Dhavernas.