When images of Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander in 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' first hit, the internet rushed to devour a new version of one of the most talked-about literary characters of the past 10 years. You may not be a fan of the books, but there's no denying their popularity -- which is part of the reason why we're seeing an English-language adaptation soon after three Swedish adaptations swept through theaters. Still, though, some question whether we needed another adaptation, and whether David Fincher -- a director who may win multiple Oscars this year for his previous film, 'The Social Network' -- should've taken on this particular property in the first place.

Until we begin seeing footage, the answer to that question remains a mystery. What we do have now is the unveiling of a character and an actress by way of a photo spread in W magazine. While it may serve as a strange debut for Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander, it does give us a bunch of fresh looks at what the up-and-coming actress has planned for the role. From her rough-and-tough biker pose to a more subdued and curious close-up, in this spread Mara delivers her Lisbeth Salandar in buffet form, unafraid and unapologetic, just like Salandar herself.

What we failed to mention the other day was that the spread comes with a fascinating 8-page story on the film, featuring interviews with Fincher and Mara. One of the most interesting aspects of the movie that fans of the book might want to know is that the ending will be completely altered for Fincher's version.
From the article, "The script, which captures the novel's bleak tone (its original Swedish title was Men Who Hate Women), was written by Academy Award winner Steven Zaillian, who wrote Schindler's List, and it departs rather dramatically from the book. Blomkvist is less promiscuous, Salander is more aggressive, and, most notably, the ending-the resolution of the drama -- has been completely changed. This may be sacrilege to some, but Zaillian has improved on Larsson -- the script's ending is more interesting."

On why he chose Rooney Mara to play Salander, Fincher notes, "I wanted her from the beginning. Rooney may be a trust-fund baby from football royalty, but she's levelheaded and hardworking. It's so odd how who people are comes out in auditions. We didn't make it easy for Rooney, and there was no way to dissuade her."

When he says he didn't make it easy, he wasn't kidding. One of the ways Fincher auditioned actresses for the role was by putting them right smack into the film's most provocative scene, in which Salander tortures the man who's been sexually abusing her. Says Fincher, "It was hard. We had five or six girls audition with the rape scene. The girls had to kick a dildo up his ass. That's Salander's big scene, and we had to see if they could do it."

In terms of her transformation into Salander, Mara had her eyebrows bleached, her hair chopped and received piercings in her lip, brow, nose and nipple. She recalls, "I didn't even have pierced ears. They put four holes in each ear, and, weirdly, that hurt the most. It was all very organized. With David, everything is measured and carefully considered. He wants what he sees in his head."

Check out the full article over at W magazine and let us know what you think. Is this the right look for Lisbeth Salander, or was Noomi Rapace's version more convincing?
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
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categories Movies, Cinematical