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Carey Mulligan Says She Went Through Three Rounds Of Auditions For 'The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo'

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist January 10, 2012 at 11:00AM

While the movie is out, and Rooney Mara has proven to be the perfect choice for Lisbeth Salander, the story of what could have been is always intriguing. As has been well documented already, "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" went through a lengthy, and very publicized casting process and in the final days, Sarah Snook, Sophie Lowe and Léa Seydoux were said to be the final candidates, with a mix of established and lesser known names like Ellen Page, Natalie Portman, Emma Watson, Mia Wasikowska, Emily Browning and Katie Jarvis also in the running. Last fall, David Fincher said that Scarlett Johansson gave a great audition but proved to be too sexy for the somewhat androgynous part. Also being considered was "Drive" and "Shame" star Carey Mulligan, and she reveals she was called back more than once to try out for the part.
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Carey Mulligan

While the movie is out, and Rooney Mara has proven to be the perfect choice for Lisbeth Salander, the story of what could have been is alwasy intriguing. As has been well documented already, "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" wen through a lengthy, and very publicized casting process and in the final days, Sarah Snook, Sophie Lowe and Léa Seydoux were said to be the final candidates, with a mix of established and lesser known names like Ellen Page, Natalie Portman, Emma Watson, Mia Wasikowska, Emily Browning and Katie Jarvis also in the running. Last fall, David Fincher said that Scarlett Johansson gave a great audition but proved to be too sexy for the somewhat androgynous part. Also being considered was "Drive" and "Shame" star Carey Mulligan, and she reveals she was called back more than once to try out for the part.

"I auditioned three times for 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,' " Mulligan told Little White Lies in a recent interview. She went on to explain that Fincher's exacting methods and pursuit of what he wants, isn't just restricted to the film set. She also hoped that landing the role would allow to her break out of being offered parts that mirrored her youthful turn in her breakout film, "An Education."

"The first audition I did, I don’t think I was sort of in his mind for it. So the first audition I did for the casting director without him. And then the second was with him and the third one was with him. He is very specific. He tells you exactly what he wants you to do. He’s very kind. I was intimidated, but he was very…He’s very direct. I like people who are direct," Mulligan explained. "I just sort of went all out for it because I did feel a little bit stuck in sort of being young looking or playing these parts. And I’d done so much costume drama and all these things kept on presenting themselves as opportunities and I just thought, ‘If I could do that… ha!’ And also to work with him and to work with Daniel Craig was an amazing opportunity. It was such a great character. But he was just very, yeah, very specific, very direct, very honest and quite brief – with me, at least. His reputation of course is that he takes, like, 45 takes so him being brief with me was probably an indication that I wasn’t going to get the job. But that’s okay." 

A fascinating peek behind the curtain, from an actress who appears to be quite grounded. The rest of the interview is fascinating and worth clicking over there for, particularly for Mulligan's thoughts on the "one for them, one for me" strategy (she doesn't particularly buy into that notion), how her U.K. agents tend to take more risks in finding her roles the responsibility women have in creating their opportunities in the industry.

At any rate, though she lost out on 'Dragon Tattoo,' Mulligan has an envoius 2012 ahead of her with roles in two of the most anticipated films of the year: the Coen Brothers' "Inside Llewyn Davis" and Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby."

This article is related to: Carey Mulligan, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo


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