Fincher and Mulligan for ‘Dragon Tattoo?’

Posted by · 11:41 am · March 15th, 2010

Noomi Rapace in The Girl With the Dragon TattooAs hard as it is to imagine the button-cute Carey Mulligan festooned with body art and facial piercings, kicking all kinds of corporate ass, it’s an intriguing possibility we must now consider.

Over the past few days, the newly-minted Oscar nominee’s name, along with that of director David Fincher, has been connected with the much-fancied Hollywood remake of “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.” Nothing has been confirmed, but Fincher and Mulligan would be a suitably A-list fit for a project that already boasts Scott Rudin as producer, with a script by Steven Zaillian.

The original Swedish thriller, based (in case you’ve been living under a rock these past few years) on the first part of Stieg Larsson’s bestselling “Millennium” trilogy, just opened in the UK to sturdy business for a foreign-language title, and lands Stateside on Friday.

Unlike some highly impressed critics, I think the film offers some room for improvement — Larsson’s dense mystery isn’t an easy adaptation prospect, but at nearly 160 minutes, the well-crafted, well-acted film feels overstuffed and televisual. I rather hope Zaillian has filleted the novel more judiciously.

Noomi Rapace, a previously unheralded Swedish actress who received a European Film Award nomination for her performance last year, is a smart physical and vocal match for the novel’s heroine, Lisbeth Salander, though perhaps even glassier than the role demands. I’d be interested to see what difference the less imposing screen presence of Mulligan might make — at any rate, the role would be a neat typecasting-deterrent for the young Brit.

As for Fincher, the material would appear to play to his strengths — should this turn out to be his next move after his upcoming Facebook drama “The Social Network,” it’d be tempting to imagine he’s seeking out the most contemporary projects possible after his dodgy (albeit Oscar-nominated) foray into period romance.

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23 responses so far

  • 1 3-15-2010 at 12:02 pm

    AdamL said...

    Loved the film – at least an A-. Only the last 20 mins, which was a bit after the Lord Mayor’s show, failed to pack a punch. Great characters and some of the early stuff was riveting.

  • 2 3-15-2010 at 12:27 pm

    The Dude said...

    Rumor has it Fincher is planning on doing some chess-themed movie next. So I don’t know if he’ll actually be the one to do this….which is a shame, because I’d rather see him do something like this than a chess movie.

  • 3 3-15-2010 at 12:34 pm

    Nel said...

    Guy, I know you have a soft spot for Mulligan but: No, No, No, No, No and Noooooooooooh.
    Also that for the other studio, choice of George Clooney. Cast Kirsten Stewart or Ellen Page or better still and I say this as being a big Fincher fan, don’t remake it as it will only be a disappointment. I say this as some one who is has heard that the 2nd and 3rd films of the trilogy are supposed to be rather disappointing.

  • 4 3-15-2010 at 12:44 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    It’s not a remotely similar role or project, but I find myself casting my mind back to Mulligan’s performance in the Doctor Who “Blink” episode and … well, I’m interested.

    Stewart seems too on-the-nose a choice to me.

  • 5 3-15-2010 at 12:59 pm

    Nel said...

    Mulligan in Blink was impressive but you never got the sense that she was a type of girl, who had more than her fair share of knocks and could on the surface handle anything the world had to throw at her. You also point out that Noomi Rapace has a very strong presence on the screen. I would go so far to say that presence is almost masculine and given Mulligan’s work so far, I don’t think she could pull this off.

    Apologies also for the incoherent final part of my earlier post which should have read *even though the second and third films of the trilogy are supposed to be disappointing*

  • 6 3-15-2010 at 1:02 pm

    Jonathan Spuij said...

    It’s an incredibly demanding role for an actreess I suppose. A hacking lesbian goth chick murderer fighting off schizophrenia. Gotta love that combo. Don’t know how much of the original “shock” elements will remain in the remake though.

    Love the films and I always knew Fincher was the right one for this from the get go.

  • 7 3-15-2010 at 1:22 pm

    linaf said...

    ugh, I hated this film with passion, its so overrated. I dont want Mulligan in this at all.

    I pray this is juts rumors, but I do love to see her name toping Studios projects, I want her to have a wonderful career.

  • 8 3-15-2010 at 1:41 pm

    Matt King said...

    Ah, “Blink,” my favourite Doctor Who episode. So good.

  • 9 3-15-2010 at 1:45 pm

    Frank Lee said...

    Here’s a weird factoid: I just looked on IMDB, and the Swedish title of the film (and, presumably, the book) translates directly as “Men Who Hate Women.”

  • 10 3-15-2010 at 2:10 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Yes, publishers apparently deemed the original title too confrontational. A shame, I think.

  • 11 3-15-2010 at 2:21 pm

    Michael W. said...

    Yeah, “Men Who Hate Women” is the titel of both book and film here in Scandinavia. And that exact thing is a big part of the story.

    I actually think Carey Mulligan would be a great choice in a remake. Noomi Rapace in real life doesn’t look like Lisbeth Salander either… I think that her stature and appearance is actually very much like Mulligan’s. When Rapace was cast in the film many fans of the books were unhappy because they thought she was totally wrong for the part.

  • 12 3-15-2010 at 3:57 pm

    Jonathan Spuij said...

    Americans are such prudes. They would never go see a movie with such a title. Hence the change to something far more different.

  • 13 3-15-2010 at 5:22 pm

    TJK said...

    Isn’t Fincher rumored to finally do a new version of “Heavy Metal” together with J. Cameron and Z. Snyder?

  • 14 3-15-2010 at 10:47 pm

    Pat said...

    The Swedish movies were made for tv and only got theatre-releases because of insane demand. The first movie was decent, I guess, but the following two only got weaker and weaker. If the script turns out good the role of Lisbeth ought to be the most sought after in young hollywood in a long while. Best female character in the last 40 years of pop culture? Mulligan? I was always thinking Portman, but Mulligan might not be too bad.

  • 15 3-16-2010 at 1:30 am

    Guy Lodge said...

    Pat: Interesting, I didn’t know that. So my “televisual” claim wasn’t far off!

    Jonathan: The title was changed for the book’s publication, not just the film. And not just for the American market.

  • 16 3-16-2010 at 3:35 am

    Jonathan Spuij said...

    Sorry, “English-speaking market” then.

  • 17 3-16-2010 at 4:45 am

    Liz said...

    I just finished this book, and I was really disappointed. Way too long, overstuffed, more endings than “Lord of the Rings,” and a hero with the personality of a park bench.

    I’m still going to see the original movie, though. Hopefully, there was a considerable amount of pruning.

    I love the idea of Carey Mulligan as Lisbeth. Please, no Kristen Stewart. Her tic-filled, mannered performances drive me crazy.

  • 18 3-16-2010 at 11:41 am

    Jonathan Spuij said...

    So, it’s quite funny to see so much difference between the oceans. In Europe, both the movies and the novels are huge, also critically, and in the US I’m merely reading mehs and boos. Though some people seem to like it, but on one’s really that blown away with it.

  • 19 3-16-2010 at 11:59 am

    missy said...

    The first book is amazing I read it in 2 days. My ideal casting choice is Ellen Page. She would knock it out the park.

  • 20 3-17-2010 at 12:32 pm

    snowballa said...

    How about Zoe Kravitz? She has that punk sensibility, Lenny being her papa and all.

  • 21 3-18-2010 at 11:08 am

    Chris G. said...

    “The Swedish movies were made for tv and only got theatre-releases because of insane demand. The first movie was decent, I guess, but the following two only got weaker and weaker.”

    I agree. Although, the first part was intended as a movie all a long done by danish director Niels Arden Oplev, while the 2nd and 3rd part was going to be directed by a swedish director for swedish television.

    They should have let Niels Arden Oplev direct all 3 parts, and they might have been able to keep the fell or vision he had for the series.

  • 22 3-22-2010 at 3:24 am

    Pelle G said...

    “The Swedish movies were made for tv and only got theatre-releases because of insane demand.”

    Wrong! The first movie was definitely made for theatrical release. Only the next two was previously made for television only. They changed their minds when the first film was such a success.

    The director of the last two films is Daniel Alfredson, the brother of Tomas Alfredson, director of “Let the Right One In”. That doesn’t guarantee quality but Daniel has made plenty features and to say the last two would have been better with Oplev as a director is really exaggerated. All films are decent to good.

  • 23 4-04-2010 at 10:40 am

    satu said...

    I would love to see Natalie Portman or Ellen Page as Lisbeth!