Scarlett Johansson (!) favored for U.S. remake of ‘The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.’
I know its “ahhhcting, my boy,” and I’ve long since learned not to underestimate Hollywood’s capacity for magic, but doesn’t Scarlett Johansson strike you as just a little too lush and pampered for the tole of Lisbeth Salander?
Not to mention, too –er, um– womanly? Salander, after all, is a tough goth chick, a feral hacker savant, and I, for one, have always envisioned her as small and wiry and boyish.
More like Noomi Rapace, who plays the role in the Swedish films — although to be fair, Rapace, at 30 is a tad mature for Lisbeth, who is in her early 20s in the first book, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, but who looks a decade younger.
In any event, Johansson delivered a knock-out audition, according to Frank DiGiacomo, gossip columnist for the New York Daily News, who tastefully refers to the 26-year-old actress as “Scar-Jo.” (Stupid mash-up nicknames: One more reason to hate A-Rod and J-Lo.)
DiGiacomo reports that Johansson arrived at the audition with a “flawless” Swedish accent, impressing director David Fincher, whose previous literary adaptations range from Fight Club (yay!) to The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (boo! hiss! blech!).
Fincher has “eliminated” the other established stars from his list, including Natalie Portman,
Cary Mulligan and Ellen Page (one-time front runner Kristen Stewart is nowhere mentioned in recent reports) — all of whom would seem to look more the part than Johansson.
The director may still go with his first instinct, which was to cast a relative unknown (said to be leading candidates: Rooney Mara, Lea Seydoux, Sarah Snook, and Sophie Lowe. I’ve heard of none of these actresses, but their names come curiously from the same sections of the alphabet).
No offense to Johansson, who’s proven her mettle in films like Ghost World, Lost in Translation and Vicky Cristina Barcelona (she’s been in a metric ton of stinkers, too), but I hope Fincher picks an unknown for such an iconic role. But I’m not betting the farm.
Whoever gets the part will star alongside Daniel Craig, already cast as crusading reporter Mikael Blomkvist. I wish Fincher had gone with a lesser known face here, too — someone like Kevin McKidd, if you wanted to go in one direction, or Timothy Olyphant if you wanted another, or, if you wanted to be really bold, Ray Winstone.
Craig’s a powerful presence on screen, but he brings all that James Bond baggage with him.
If it were up to me, I’d at least give Sarah Michelle Geller a screen test. Yes, she has that Buffy baggage, but that’s almost a decade past now. Her biggest drawback is her age. At 33, she could still play early 20s, but I’m not sure sure about early 20s looking 14.
So who would you cast as Lisbeth Salander? Get your nomination in quick — production is said to start right after Labor Day. Sounds like Fincher can
use all the good advice he can get.
Of course keep in mind that it probably won’t matter. Odds are, Hollywood’s going to mess this one up, just like it did with at least half the Harry Potter movies.
And based just on looks, because I’ve seen little of any of these unknown actresses, uh, acting, I’d say Rooney Mara. But I wouldn’t be happy about it.