Salander Role Up for Grabs for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

by Anne Thompson
August 8, 2010 8:26 AM
8 Comments
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Thompson on Hollywood
Thompson on Hollywood
Thompson on Hollywood
Thompson on Hollywood
Thompson on Hollywood
Everyone is waiting for the news to break on which of the young actresses in the wings will land the role of punk hacker Lisbeth Salander in David Fincher's English-language film of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. According to producer Scott Rudin, EW's story positing that Natalie Portman is back in the running because the studio is skittish about casting an unknown in such a pivotal recurring role is "not true."

Being able to deliver kick-ass action, uninhibited bisexual sex, intense emotion and a Swedish accent makes this a challenge for any actress. Given that Fincher seems bent on casting an unknown under age 24 and under five foot five, Portman at age 29 and Evan Rachel Wood and Carey Mulligan at 5' 7" seem to be out of the running. So expect Salander to be one of the final four (Sucker Punch's Emily Browning seems to have fallen by the wayside): French Lea Seydoux, American Rooney Mara (who worked with Fincher in The Social Network) or Aussies Sarah Snook or Sophie Lowe. There is an outside chance that Inception star Ellen Page could sneak in if she nails the accent. The decision should come down soon, as Daniel Craig will move into this movie this fall as Mikael Blomkvist after he completes Jon Favreau's Cowboys & Aliens. UPDATE: Insiders give the edge to Mara, but the studio is dragging its feet on not using a name actress; the decision should be made by the end of the week.

I like the possible casting of Stellan Skarsgard and Robin Wright (now divorced from Sean Penn) as Martin Vanger and Erika Berger, Blomkvist's married editor, respectively. I'd like to see Berger nab a larger role in this movie than in the Swedish version, which omitted her sexy relationship with her star writer, who is what you'd call a man who loves women. That aspect of his persona is given short shrift in the Swedish films. Writer Steve Zaillian has promised to put Salander front and center in these stories--some months back he led me to think he was expecting to write all three.

Thompson on Hollywood
Thompson on Hollywood
Thompson on Hollywood

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8 Comments

  • Emma | August 10, 2010 6:56 AMReply

    It's crazy cause Evan Rachel Wood has all those qualities you mentioned....a 1st degree black belt, speaks Swedish, intense emotions, not afraid of nude scenes....why on earth would he worry about her height? Is height THE most important thing here? They make leading men look taller all the time...can't they film someone so they look shorter? It's kind of ridiculous.

  • cadavra | August 9, 2010 8:32 AMReply

    Love Page, but she's hardly unknown.

    Zoe Kazan would be my choice. She's perfect for the role and has plenty of talent and experience, yet is still largely unknown to the public at large.

  • Brad | August 9, 2010 7:00 AMReply

    Swedish accents??? You mean Fincher is going to adopt the old Hollywood foreign accent affectation? Mistake City! And just when Stellan Skarsgard has mastered speaking English without a Swedish accent to boot!

  • brian | August 9, 2010 5:11 AMReply

    Katie Jarvis from Fish Tank would be perfect

  • tam | August 9, 2010 4:42 AMReply

    I'm keeping my fingers crossed for Ellen Page to past the accent test :)
    I really want to see her embody Salander so badly!

    Great news about Robin Wright. I hope Fincher gives her a substantial role to play.

  • mitkid | August 9, 2010 1:32 AMReply

    Agree that more Erika Berger is required. While not the lead, she was an essential character in the development of the books, they would have been far poorer without her.

  • Betty | August 8, 2010 12:05 PMReply

    Daniel Craig is perfect!! I was thinking about that....also I hope Ellen Page can get the accent down.....she would be a great Salander.....now for the rest.....so many characters. Great trilogy....loved it.

  • Ichi | August 8, 2010 10:47 AMReply

    It is a mistake to pass over Browning. After March 2011 she is gonna be pretty big when Sucker Punch hits.

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