After weeks of speculation, David Fincher has finally found his Lisbeth Salander. The director has cast the relatively unknown Rooney Mara as his female lead in “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.”
Based on the first installment of Stieg Larsson’s wildly popular Millennium Trilogy, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” has already been turned into a smash hit movie in Sweden. Noomi Rapace, who played Salander in the original films, is regarded by most fans as having played the role to perfection, so Mara has some big shoes to fill.
Mara’s previous credits include “Youth in Revolt,” “A Nightmare on Elm Street” and Fincher’s upcoming “The Social Network.” I’ve never seen any of Mara’s work, so I can’t say whether she’ll do the role justice. Based on her picture, I can imagine her pulling off Salander’s signature punk look and tough attitude. I plan on seeing “The Social Network” as soon as it opens, so hopefully she’ll prove her acting chops there. She certainly made an impression on Fincher through that film.
Other actresses who were rumored to be in contention for the role include more established stars like Ellen Page, Natalie Portman, Carey Mulligan and Mia Wasikowska, as well as other lesser-known talent like Australian actresses Sarah Snook and Sophie Lowe. Personally, I like the idea of an unknown stepping into the role, but Salander is an incredibly complex part, and it may have been safer to cast a more established and experienced actress. Of course, Fincher has never been one for playing it safe.
Mara joins the previously announced Daniel Craig as disgraced journalist Mikael Blomkvist, Robin Wright as “Millennium” editor-in-chief Erika Berger and Stellan Skarsgard as corporate big shot Martin Vanger. Fincher seems to be assembling a talented cast, so I hope Mara will fit right in.
“The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” opens Dec. 21, 2011, just in time for Oscar season.
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