‘Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ Sequel Moving Forward Without Mara, Craig and Fincher

By November 4, 2015

Some crazy doings over at Sony as it now looks like David Fincher’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo cast is no more. However… it does look like we WILL be getting another movie in the series but without Oscar Nominee Rooney Mara, Daniel Craig and even, David Fincher. I know, I’m confused as well. Let’s break down The Hollywood Reporter’s, uh, report:

According to their report:

Lisbeth Salander will hack again on the big screen but not in The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo sequel, The Girl Who Played With Fire. Instead, Sony is putting its focus on book No. 4 in the Millennium series, The Girl in the Spider’s Web, the first book famously not written by creator Stieg Larsson.

For the cheap seats in the back, the movie is, essentially, a reboot – meaning – they are starting anew with the latest best seller as the story. So for those Dragon Tattoo lovers hoping to see Fincher et al. finish the Stieg Larsson trilogy of books, you’re out of luck.

And this is a giant bummer all around.

Not soon after, TheWrap’s Jeff Sneider updated the search for Lisbeth Salander and revealed a new name in the mix for this update: Alicia Vikander. In his story, Sony has a keen eye on the actress proving again, the studio is looking for all new blood in this adaptation:

Per the Wrap:

Vikander is one of Hollywood’s brightest young stars and an edgy character like Lisbeth Salander would counterbalance her acclaimed work in period dramas such as “The Danish Girl,” “Anna Karenina,” “A Royal Affair” and “Testament of Youth” The Swedish starlet can currently be seen opposite Bradley Cooper in “Burnt,” and has “Tulip Fever” and the next Jason Bourne movie on the horizon.

Now then, on to the reasons behind the new take on the property. I’ll get to the politics and real story behind it all in a moment but for this guy here writing up the story, I couldn’t be more disappointed or upset at Sony, the studio behind it all. Fincher’s Dragon Tattoo is, I’m sorry, a masterpiece (in my opinion) and to squander such talent as David Fincher, Daniel Craig and, most importantly, Rooney Mara (who was NOMINATED!) well, I just don’t understand.

THR’s report continues:

The studio is in early talks with Steven Knight (Burnt) to adapt the novel, which became an international best seller after it was published in September. Dragon Tattoo producer Scott Rudin is returning to produce alongside Amy Pascal, who negotiated the rights in her exit package from the studio, and Elizabeth Cantillon (Concussion).

As for the Larsson-less book and story,

Written by David Lagercrantz — who was hired after Larsson passed away in 2004 — Spider’s Web follows superhacker Salander and investigative journalist Mikael Blomkvist as they find themselves at the center of a tangled web of spies, cybercriminals and corrupt governments.

The story to me seems pretty run of the mill, and the only real news is that it continues the adventures with our two main characters from the original trilogy of books, Salander and Blomkvist. They are the reason people are buying the books.

But I’m talking here about the movie. Without Fincher, Craig and Mara, what is the point?

Here’s the hard numbers and ‘Hollywood politics’ I mentioned up top:

Though 2011’s Tattoo made $233 million worldwide, the film was deemed too expensive for a hard-R film thanks to a $90 million budget. The studio has options on Craig for two sequels, but the actor was said to want a pay raise, making his return impossible given the studio’s mandate to make Spider’s Web at a much lower budget.

For so long there were rumors about the sequel – that it was officially moving forward, then dead, then moving forward. Then nothing. When the big Sony leak happened, a sweet email from Rooney Mara was sent to Amy Pascal (head of the studio at the time) and she mentioned said rumors and how much she wanted to make the sequel. Now we have the answer.

Also in the report, word that the actual second book in the trilogy WAS optioned and adapted by Steven Zallian, the original script writer on Dragon Tattoo. It was, at the time, one of the most expensive adaptations to date. So Sony does have that movie, I suppose, ready to go.

In the end, this is just Sony wanting to save money while still holding on to the franchise. Since the latest book doesn’t really follow the chronology of the originals, it’s an easy way for them to create, essentially, a stand alone movie. Sony, I’m sure, will hope for it to be a success so they can, perhaps, start again with – GULP – a reboot of Dragon Tattoo with the new cast. That’s what it seems to me…

For now, let’s see what happens and see if Alicia Vikander will get the call. And while doing that, excuse me while I mourn Rooney Mara’s interpretation. Aside from the stellar Swedish versions that I also adore, this was one of the rare times a American adaptation of the foreign film played just as well.

Make sure you check back for more updates — right here on GeekNation.

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Mark Reilly
Born a geek a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away - Tustin, CA - Reilly is a seasoned writer and producer with over twenty years experience in the film industry. He is the co-host of 'Far, Far Away' here on GeekNation as well as 'Meet the Movie Press' on the Popcorn Talk Network; which airs live every Friday morning at 9am pst. Tweet him at @Reillyaround
  • The Tenth Doctor


  • Britton Dowers

    This is horrible news. Really enjoy the Craig and Fincher version. I think it’s Craigs best performance other than Bond (that I’ve seen) .
    I haven’t read the new book since Larson’s girlfriend who was really was his wife in all but name didn’t approve it. She helped him write the first three and apparently has part of a 4th book Larson wrote. I wish we would have gotten that book with her as the author since she had more of an idea of where he would take the story. She very much disapproves of this book and while I’m curious about the story, I know it’s not the true authors vision.
    Sorry for the ramble. This just stinks all the way around

  • David Johnson

    The Swedish Version worked for Me!