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New Look At Rooney Mara As Lisbeth Salander In 'The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo'

by Kevin Jagernauth
August 11, 2011 8:59 AM
12 Comments
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The summer is just about over and with the fall movie season around the corner, the veil is beginning to lift on quite a few films, but none of them will be as highly scrutinized as The Feel Bad Movie Of Christmas, "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo." Chatter has already started around the controversial, semi-nude poster and whether or not the red band teaser was officially leaked (or not). But the marketing on the film is only just beginning and after the official website was boosted yesterday with character bios and a generous helping of Trent Reznor's score, EW has revealed the first still from the movie with Rooney Mara in the title role as Lisbeth Salander.

As everyone knows, getting the gig wasn't a guarantee and though Mara eventually beat out competition which included Sarah Snook, Sophie Lowe, Léa Seydoux, Ellen Page, Natalie Portman, Carey Mulligan, Emma Watson, Mia Wasikowska, Emily Browning, Katie Jarvis and Scarlett Johansson, she was beginning to get a little ticked off at David Fincher for his long decision making process. "“At that point I was just super frustrated. I was like, ‘You have to decide. Either you think I’m the girl or you don’t. There’s not much more I can do to prove it to you.’ I went in there sort of ready to fight. I was pissed," she told the magazine. "But David sat me down and gave me this long speech about the part. Then he handed me his iPad, and it had the press release on it. He said, ‘I’m prepared to send this out. You have half an hour to let me know if you want the part.’”

And oh, as for that now infamous teaser poster? Mara thinks it was the right way to go. "I was supportive of it. I understand why there was a lot of controversy. People have a hard time with strong females and with nudity. But I think had I been doing something incredibly violent on the poster, people wouldn’t have had a problem with it," she says. "That sort of says a lot about the world that we live in. It’s just a teaser poster. I think it did just that. It teased people.”

And if you think one boob caused people to talk, that's just the tip of the iceberg. The film (and book) features a particularly difficult rape scene which Mara says took a week of 16 hour days to shoot describing it as "intense" and "really, really challenging, not just emotionally but physically."

As for what to expect? ''Some people are going to come to it with a preconceived notion of what it is,'' screenwriter and executive producer Steven Zaillian told EW. ''At the end of the day, it is and it isn't those things. The way that David [Fincher] has directed it, the way the actors have performed it, the way I've written it, it's all its own thing.'' The stakes are high on this film as the fans will be poring over every aspect of its journey from page to screen. Lots more to come in the months ahead, before the film opens on December 21st.

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12 Comments

  • EmilyC | August 25, 2011 4:22 AMReply

    i think Lisbeth is a sexual person, yes. and i think the way they portray her sexuality is sexualized in a very... modest and beautiful way. i believe in Rooney. Yeah, Noomi was a GREAT Lisbeth... but i believe so will Rooney.

  • Jess | August 13, 2011 11:37 AMReply

    I cant believe people are deeming Rooney Mara unconvincing as Lisbeth. She looks the part EXACTLY. The moment I saw the poster of her I was blown away, I hope her performance is equally matched with the fantastic look she has here.

  • tom | August 12, 2011 12:06 PMReply

    I believe in Rooney Mara . And it's not like the original was all that great anyway.

  • Pierre | August 12, 2011 5:54 AMReply

    Two month audition process, people. Two month.

    How long have you been thinking about the casting, two minutes?

  • TheJones | August 12, 2011 5:04 AMReply

    Um, Emma Watson was NEVER in consideration for the role. She chopped her hair off only because she wanted a change after wrapping the last Harry Potter film.

  • TimParker | August 11, 2011 12:49 PMReply

    Rooney will be great, because agreed, Fincher is a top of the line, smart director who knows how to get good performances, and obviously he could have chosen anyone (out of those close enough to resembling) for this role. The person on here who doubts Rooney's ability because of her performance in Nightmare on Elm Street? Seriously? Meryl Streep could've been in that movie and sucked horribly--no one is looking for great performances in a movie like that.
    And to those who say Noomi Repace was much more Salander-looking, first of all, it's the screenwriter and Fincher's interpretation of the novel and it's fresh in my head, and she looks very accurate. Second, I'm sick of people bashing English language versions of films and Third, you can't think of this as a remake, it's simply another filmmaking team's vision of another screenwriter's adaptation of the same novel.

  • Leah | August 11, 2011 11:01 AMReply

    Lisbeth didn't constantly walk around with an "I'll fuck you up" stare in the book like Rapace did in the Swedish film. She was described as being a perfect looking victim and vulnerable looking. The people who messed with her never thought she'd be a threat to them, so I think Mara's got the right appearance for this.

  • Paul | August 11, 2011 10:30 AMReply

    She'll be fantastic. Fincher is a far better judge of character than everyone on this board. Myself included.

  • Kevin Klawitter | August 11, 2011 10:08 AMReply

    @Mick:

    But Lisbeth isn't supposed to be "sexy" in the conventional sense. She's a sexuAL character, but not sexuaLIZED.

  • cineman | August 11, 2011 9:50 AMReply

    They're going to have to boost Daniel Craig role to really to carry the story. Rooney Dead Eyed Mara will suck the oxygen out of this movie.

    I hope I'm wrong, and I do believe in Fincher, but the most shocking nadir of the Nightmare on Elm Street remake was her soulless cardboard performance. So skin-tearingly bad I still have the scars.

  • Mick Nolte | August 11, 2011 9:23 AMReply

    It would be good if they cast Hollywood’s most famous Swedish stars in the sequels such as Malin Åkerman, Dolph Lundgren, Lena Olin and Max von Sydow.

    Rooney Mara looks so ugly and hideous in this movie. There is absolutely nothing sexy about her in this film.

  • JP | August 11, 2011 9:20 AMReply

    I'm sorry, but the (over)hype for Mara is ridiculous, as she looks just so horribly unconvincing in any in-costume photo I've seen of her.

    There's no toughness in her face and she might as well be playing dress-up. Rapace's version of the character would eat her alive.

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