‘Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ Images: Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander

Published 4 years ago by , Updated February 10th, 2012 at 11:50 am,

rooney mara the girl with the dragon tattoo 05 e1294954918950 Girl With the Dragon Tattoo Images: Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander

A couple of days ago some images of actress Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander in David Fincher’s adaptation of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo surfaced online… but they were a bit too racy for our family-friendly tastes here at Screen Rant :-).

The heroine of late author Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy novels is indeed just as risque as she is fierce and brilliant, and from the look of things, Mara seems to be diving head-first into the role.

Those who have read Larsson’s first novel or seen the Swedish-language film adaptation by director Niels Arden Oplev already know that Girl With the Dragon Tattoo has some bone-chillingly dark and disturbing moments that must be faced by Salander and investigative journalist Mikael Blomkvist (played in Fincher’s film by Daniel Craig). As Fincher told W magazine, they were not playing around when it came to casting Salander: actresses auditioning for the part had to act out what is probably the character’s darkest moment in the novel, and Mara did enough to ultimately walk away with the job.

For those who don’t know, Rooney Mara’s real life is worlds away from the lonely, gritty, hellish world of genius hacker Lisbeth Salander. The actress is practically NFL royalty, as she is directly related to both the founder of the Pittsburgh Steelers and the founder of the New York Giants; her family has co-owned The Giants ever since. Mara’s older sister also happens to be Kate Mara, an actress recently seen on Entourage, an appearance in Iron Man 2, and is currently a shortlist candidate to star in Chris Nolan’s Dark Knight Rises. As an actress, Rooney Mara is best known for her starring role in the Nightmare on Elm Street remake and her pivotal role as Mark Zuckerberg’s ex-girlfriend in Fincher’s latest film, The Social Network. Though brief, Mara’s turn in Social Network was strong enough to earn a spot on our own “Best Movie Moments of 2010” list.

I say all that to say: An actress with a life this lavish must’ve really done something right to snag such a sought-after role from a director as demanding as Fincher. And Mara doesn’t seem at all shy about donning her Salander persona for the camera. Check out the photos from W that we CAN show you (head to W for the rest):


I know that some of you reading this are upset about this Dragon Tattoo remake, and are especially disgruntled at the thought of someone else besides actress Noomi Rapace – who played Salander in the Swedish films – taking on the part. Yes, Rapace did a phenomenal job with the role (enough so to land some high-profile Hollywood roles), but if I’m being totally honest, what I see here from Mara makes me feel like she is a just a bit truer to the character Larsson described in his novels.

In the books, Salander is described as being tiny in size, almost anorexic thin, covered in tattoos and piercings.  She wears the blank expression of a person who is introverted to the point of almost being autistic, while her eyes contain a wildfire intelligence and violent spirit that cannot be fathomed by most, let alone broken by any. Looking at these photos, not only does Mara embody the character (especially the stare in that cigarette image), I dare say that I have an easier time buying her as the iconic Swedish hacker than I did Rapace – who is actually Swedish!

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets Nest trailer Girl With the Dragon Tattoo Images: Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander

Noomi Rapace as Salander

Of course, we always say that people shouldn’t be too quick to judge a film by a few pictures (usually when they’re being negative), so I can’t shower too much praise on Mara just yet. However, as much as it makes me sound like a Monday morning quarterback, when casting for Dragon Tattoo was underway, I was secretly pulling for Mara to get the job. What I saw from her in Nightmare on Elm Street impressed me (not an easy feat as I hated that film) and it was clear (to me) that even amidst a crowd of fresh young actors, Mara was going to standout as a star.

I hope I’m not disappointed when The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo hits theaters on December 21, 2011.

Source W via Collider

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  1. I didn’t read the series of books, but I loved the movies for their intensity and brutally realistic characters. I’m surprised by these photos and with Fincher’s direction I may check out the “hollywood” version now.

  2. It’s not a remake it’s an american adaption of a novel. It would be a remake if the film wasn’t based off of pre-existing material.

    • Sully it’s an American remake, pure and simple. :)

      • Good ‘ol semantics huh Ants lol :).

        • A lot of people I know are calling it a remake, my friends are trying to get me to read the books too, but I am soo back logged on reading that I don’t know if I would have the time before the film was released. There have been many many American remakes of foreign films over the years, this one is no different.

          • If you’ve read the books and seen the Swedish films then you’re aware of just how much they changed when they made those Swedish movies – entire plotlines and relationships between characters were altered.

            There is PLENTY of room for Fincher’s version to be an “adaptation” – it would only be a “remake” if they tried to recreate the Swedish films…which they are clearly not.

            “Let Me In” was a remake of “Let The Right One In” – down to shots that were staged to mimic the Swedish film. I don’t think GWTDT is going to be that.

            • I haven’t read or seen any of the GWTDT. I want to now cause I highly respect Fincher and his style.

              But with the remake/adaption argument (not directed towards you Ants :)). To me it’s like if a musician covers a song from 1920 and then another musician covers that same song is that a remake of the original cover? I know it’s kind of a stretch but it’s my best analogy being a musician.

              • When you’re talking books and movies there is a distinction:

                An adaptation means that a filmmaker is taking the source material (the book) and translating it to film according to their unique vision of the story.

                A remake means that you are taking a movie and recreating or “updating” it.

                The key here is that an adaptation draws from the book, as opposed to a remake, which would draw from the Swedish film.

                • Kofi,

                  Totally agree with you. My analogy was kinda weak. It’s like people saying True Grit is a remake when really it is a adaption to Portis’s original novel (I may be biased here though cause The Coens are my favorite directors).

            • Thank you. I have read the books and seen the Swedish Films but I am still excited to see this because I want to see how David Fincher adapts the books. The same as “True Grit”.

  3. What about the fact that they have written a completely new ending? Not happy about that.

    • yeah not best impressed with that dsb i dont see the need to change the ending at all

      i will admit i hated the idea of this version when i first heard it and said so many times in threads on here but these pics plus the others have peaked some intrest still unsure of craig as blomqvist but we will see

      i will say that mara is to pretty( never thought i would complain about an actress bein to pretty lol) for MY vision of lisbeth but everyones will be different

  4. I was a little skeptical about the American adaption, but even with just seeing these pictures I’m more open to it. I will definitely go see it now though I wont see the others if this one turns out to be a let down…

  5. Don’t know why, but in my mind’s eye I’ve been picturing Selma Blair (about 15 years younger than she is now) as Salander while reading –I’m about half way through The Girl Who Played With Fire, and finished GWTDT a few weeks ago.
    So far I’d say Mara looks pretty spot on.

  6. “Blomkvist is less promiscuous, Salander is more aggressive.” – Fincher.

    Huge relief. I enjoyed the Swedish film (Rapace was brilliant), but the way the relationship was played out between Salandar and Blomkvist annoyed the hell out of me. It bore little resemblance to the book, which is confusing because it was completely unnecessary.

    Anyways I’m looking forward to the US adaption.

  7. I hope I’m not the only one who finds these pics hot. I don’t usually like punk rock girls, but this is awesome.

    • hah

  8. WOW! She looks amazing…

  9. I saw the premiere last night, and she was amazing!