As you might have heard, director David Fincher is directing an American movie adaptation of Steig Larsson’s wildly popular novel, “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.” The book was just on the cover of Entertainment Weekly last week, and at 40 million copies sold, Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy is now the most important book franchise to come along since Twilight plagued the Earth. The movie’s gonna be huge, and so the jockeying to play Lisbeth Salander, the punk hacker girl at the heart of the trilogy, has become something of a spectator sport in Hollywood right now.
If there’s a young actress you’ve heard of, they’ve been mentioned for the role of Salander. Predictable names like ScarJo and Carey Mulligan and Kristen Stewart and Ellen Page. Producer Scott Rudin has already said they’re open to casting a newcomer, which makes sense given that “Tattoo” will be a movie you see because the story is the star, not the actress.
The Swedish movie version of “Tattoo” is still playing here in U.S. theaters (and doing quite well for a foreign film). The actor playing Salander in that version is Noomi Rapace, who has portrayed Salander to near universal acclaim. Rapace has already said she has no interest in reprising the role for the English language version due to the stressful nature of playing the character, so she’s out.
Thus, it’s anyone’s guess who gets this role right now. So, while it’s up in the air, allow me to make a plea to Rudin and the folks in charge of this potentially lucrative thriller franchise: Consider casting Aubrey Plaza.
Plaza plays April on NBC’s “Parks And Recreation.” You probably do not watch this show. At least, that’s what the ratings suggest. It’s too bad, because "Parks" is a great show. And Plaza is quite fantastic on it. In fact, the character she plays on the show isn’t that far from the character of Lisbeth Salander: sullen, blunt, and a bit mysterious. It’s as if the role was written specifically to prepare her to play Salander. Plaza excels at playing a character who keeps virtually everyone at a distance, but still manages to give you split-second glimpses of warmth. Just enough to want you to find out more about her character. Also, she’s funny. Very funny.
Anyway, since they’re turning up every stone in Hollywood to find the right actress for the role, they may as well give Plaza a shot. It’s hard to find a young actress who’s proven, but still unknown enough to make the role entirely her own. Plaza fits the bill. Give her a screen test, fellas. You won’t be sorry you did.