Fresh off the news that the fourth book in the Millennium series would be getting a film adaptation, two of Hollywood’s biggest names have been rumoured to be taking over the role of Lisbeth Salander.
With Rooney Mara, who starred in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo in 2011 all but confirming that she would not be involved this time around, and a new director already signed on (Fede Alvarez will direct in place of David Fincher) – either Natalie Portman and Scarlett Johansson could be in line for the part.
“We’ve got a great script and now comes the most fun part – finding our Lisbeth,” Alvarez told USA Today on Monday – and both potential replacements have plenty of experience in blockbuster franchises; Portman as Queen Amidala in Star Wars, and both in the Marvel cinematic universe – Johansson as Black Widow, a role she has reprised in six different films, and Portman as Jane Foster in the two Thor movies.
Johansson is currently the highest grossing actress in American history. Her films have grossed over $3.6 billion (USD) in her home country and over $9 billion worldwide, Portman’s grossing $2.1 billion in the USA and $4.7 billion worldwide.
Why the series is moving on from Mara in unclear (she was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in Dragon Tattoo), and it seems that Daniel Craig, who played journalist Mikael Blomkvist back in 2011, will also not feature.
Spider’s Web is set for release in October 2018. It will be the first film in the series to be released as an English adaptation first, with the first three books all transformed from page to screen in author Stieg Larsson’s native Sweden.
The second and third books in the series were not re-made in Hollywood, putting this release in the uniquely peculiar position of a ‘sequel’, despite jumping straight from book one to book four.
The text for the new film did not come from Larsson – following the author’s death in 2004, the series was carried on by David Lagercrantz, best known for penning the biography for Swedish footballer Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Lagercrantz will continue the series with a fifth book, which was also announce on Monday.
The first film in the series was both a critical and commercial success. In addition to winning an Oscar for Best Film Editing, it made nearly $240 million (USD) on a budget of $90 million, holds a 7.8 rating on IMDb and an 86 per cent ‘Fresh’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes.