The American remake of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo has finally found the all-important cast member. The part of expert hacker and socially inept genius Lisbeth Salander has been given to near-newcomer Rooney Mara. Who? Rooney played the part of Nancy in the recent remake of A Nightmare On Elm Street. While I am still yet to be convinced that there is any point to a remake of the film based on Stieg Larsson's massively popular novel, I am intrigued by this casting news.
The Swedish version of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo starred Noomi Rapace as Lisbeth Salander and Michael Nyqvist as Mikael Blomkvist, and seeing as the novel was about Swedish people and set in Sweden, then I'd say that version is the definitive one.
This remake is to be directed by David Fincher, which is a good start, and with Daniel Craig cast as Blomkvist (I wonder if the character's name will be changed...) it has potential, but the part of Lisbeth Salander is the key. The character is extremely complicated, disturbed, volatile and unpredictable, and hopefully that can be conveyed in an English language remake with Hollywood production values.
It is a very European novel with very European characters, and I am eager to see how well it translates. Previous names that had been linked to the part included Ellen Page, Natalie Portman and Emma Watson, none of whom would have fit Salander's characteristics or what she goes through during the film (I can't imagine any of them being put through ***SLIGHT SPOILER*** what Nils Bjurman does to Lisbeth ***SPOILER ENDS***, for example).
There will be many fans to whom Noomi Rapace is the one and only true screen version of Lisbeth (especially as all three books have already been released as movies in Sweden with Noomi in the role), but there will be yet more to whom Rooney Mara is Lisbeth. I hope she does the book, the fans and Larsson's legacy proud.
The trailer for the UK release of the Swedish version: