David Fincher Says He’s Still Figuring Out THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE

     August 27, 2012


Director David Fincher’s adaptation of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was a sizeable hit when it opened last December, but the film wasn’t the runaway box office success that some were expecting.  It’s global take of $232 million was enough to justify an adaptation of author Steig Larsson’s sequel The Girl who Played with Fire, but development on the follow-up has been slow-going.

Fincher has yet to officially attach himself as the director of Fire, and rumblings of head-butting between the director and Sony during the production of Dragon Tattoo didn’t exactly make Fincher’s return for the sequel a sure thing.  However, in a recent interview Fincher revealed that he’s still very much mulling over a return to the world of Lisbeth Salander.  Hit the jump to see what he had to say.

the-girl-who-played-with-fire-movieIn an interview with The Art of Title (via The Playlist), Fincher was asked what he’s doing next:

“Well, [I’m] trying to figure out a sequel to Dragon Tattoo. We’ve got to be able to make it our own thing.”

The director is currently busy working on the 2013 Netflix series House of Cards, for which he directed the first two episodes.  Though initially Fincher and Co. expressed interest in filming the two Dragon Tattoo sequels back-to-back, the mixed reception to the first film looks to have altered their plans.

One of the chief complaints about Fincher’s Dragon Tattoo was that it adhered too closely to the book, and with the Swedish films already out there it seemed a bit pointless.  It sounds like he may be working with screenwriter Steven Zaillian on finding a way to make the follow-up their “own thing.”

Many had pegged the big-budget 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea remake as Fincher’s next feature film, but Disney may have second thoughts about greenlighting a large-scale, CG-heavy epic in the wake of John Carter.  Fincher may have a better shot at doing his iteration of 20,000 Leagues if Gore Verbinski’s very expensive The Lone Ranger is a big success.

So, while Fincher hasn’t yet committed to his next feature film project, it sounds like he definitely hasn’t taken The Girl Who Played with Fire off the table just yet.  As he puts the finishing touches on House of Cards, hopefully we hear firm word sooner rather than later.


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  • Patrick

    Really enjoyed the film. I do find it funny that people where expecting more than $232 million at the boxoffice. This was a violent, R rated film, with several graphic rape scenes, which was released during the Christmas Holiday. Anyone expecting half a billion dollars was out of their mind. Hopefully, Fincher can film the last two books back to back. It is nice to see a series of film which aren’t focused on the 13-25 demographic. That is not meant as an insult, but a desire to further diversity in regards to blockbusters.

    • THundersauresrex

      EVEN THOUGH 19-25 was a big part of this movies’ demographic? i mean there was along range of ages. My parents, and aunts and uncles watched it. But same with every single one of my friends whose ages peak between 23-27. So it is kind of an insult saying that this type of movie for whatever reason isn’t meant for younger ages. your other points were valid…but theres always harsh type film that opens Christmas and they all do pretty well. it was the fact that it was remade at the peek of the original’s popularity in the U.S that destroyed the film and the fact that the original is HUGE outside the states hurt it over seas.

      • Patrick

        Give me a break. If a studio is making a blockbuster series of films, 90 percent of the time it is squared to the youth market. These books represent a marked difference. Yes, 17-25 year olds did go see it, but the audience skewed older. There may be a darker film that comes out every Christmas Season, but it is always dwarfed by more joyful fare. These darker films always face a 100-130 million dollar ceiling. As for the Swedish film, even though it made a sizable amount of money, it was a niche film. It collected all of 10 million in the States, and was released in much fewer countries than Fincher’s film. Lastly, calling it a remake is untrue. That is like calling Kenneth Branagh’s Hamlet a remake of Olivier’s Hamlet, or John Huston’s version of the Maltease Falcon a remake of the two earlier film adaptations. The proper phrase is readaptation.

  • SP1234

    Please let this be a good sign. Please!

  • Roland Deschain

    Hope Fincher comes back for the sequels. He’s one of my favorite directors and his Dragon Tattoo was a far superior film than the Swedish version, in my opinion.

    • Weeks

      Me too. I love the dark, stylin’ edginess he brought to it.

  • caleb

    I really enjoyed the US Version. I have read all the books and as a huge fan of those, I really like seeing Rooney Mara as Lisbeth’s. The modifications that they made to the end of Dragon Tattoo were great and I trust Fincher with any movie and to make changes to the other films as well but I do enjoy seeing a faithful adaptation of the books.

  • Slice

    David, what are you doing?

    Sequels and remakes are for people punching a paycheck. You should be out making something new.

  • Patrick

    The Godfather Part II, The Empire Strikes Back, The Silence of the Lambs, The Color of Money, Aliens, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Toy Stoy 2, Toy Story 3. Whole lot of people cashing in on money and out of credibility. I think Fincher will be in fine company. Him Zaillian could do a whole lot worse.

    • Grayden

      I’m pretty sure Empire Strikes Back was not a “cash in” considering Lucas had written one long-ass film and the studio made him cut it into 3 parts. Some films you just can’t stop after the first one. The Matrix could have ended after the first one, and for many people it did, Nolan’s Batman…eh, not so much. With established comic characters you can’t just do an origin story and then leave, at least not in the way someone like Nolan does it. Toy Stories were money grabs. Aliens was damn amazing, even though it was a different tone from Alien, still one of the better sequels ever made. Most people hadn’t seen Manhunter so they wouldn’t know Silence was actually a sequel.

      • Chad

        Lucas hadn’t written a word of Empire or Jedi when Star wars came out, and SW wasn’t even expected to be a hit. The studio didn’t make him “cut” anything.

      • Marty

        Actually Matrix was planned like a trilogy before the first one. Like Star Wars.

      • Jim

        Lol, that old rumor about Lucas writing all of Star Wars is STILL floating around? He admitted to lying about that way back.

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  • Bender

    I loved Fincher’s version of TGWTDT. I really hope he comes back for the sequels.

  • Nomis1700

    I really want to see TGWPWF to be directed by him. And of course, also TGWKTHN!!!

  • Patrick

    I am not making any such insinuations. I am being ironic. This list of films means that filmakers like Nolan, Coppola, Cameron, Scorsese, Demme, and the Pixar guys have shown that making a sequel is not the equivalence of creative bankruptcy. Fincher and Zaillian definitely belong with the listed names, and certainly have the potential to make something amazing.

  • Gregg

    You almost have to film both the Girl that Played with fire and the Girl who kicked a hornets nest, back to back. The stories lead from one to the other. I was happy with the version of Dragon, I enjoyed the Sweedish verisons of the movies. I also enjoyed the books. I wish Steig would have lived to finish the 4th book,

  • Bill

    I’d love to se him make any future entries their own thing.

    I.E. Dump ‘The Girl Who Played With Fire’ & ESPECIALLY ‘The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest’ & tell a new & unique narrative. Both are awful books with increasingly stupid narratives.

  • Bill

    I\’d love to se him make any future entries their own thing.

    I.E. Dump \’The Girl Who Played With Fire\’ & ESPECIALLY \’The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet\’s Nest\’ & tell a new & unique narrative. Both are awful books with increasingly stupid narratives.

  • Yurine

    I hope they make the sequels

  • Williammiller

    When and where did The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo get a mixed reception? Did it not get like an 87% on RT? Wasn’t it nominated for multiple Oscars including best actress? Everyone I know that saw it knew what they were getting in to and knew that it was going to be graphic (especially with Fincher at the helm), and that not everybody was going to rush out to see it. But the people who saw it liked it well enough and would probably like to see this new iteration of Lisbeth. I just don’t understand all this talk of it not being as big a hit as expected. I’d say 100 million is pretty damn good for everything that was going against it (Christmas release, nearly 3 hour runtime, very dark and violent, hard R rating).

  • Steph

    I personally really enjoyed The Girl With a Dragon Tattoo and it was my favorite of 2011. Having said that I haven’t read all the books or seen the swedish version. It’s a shame this movie had to be released the same time as Mission Impossible 4 that pretty much killed the interest. I can’t stop watching this movie. I can’t wait for movie #2 & 3 and I hope David Fincher directs it to keep the style similar of the next two movies.

  • Strong Enough

    all i get is one quotes sentence and a long ass article?

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  • Fred

    Although the film was a success, I wonder why Fincher bothered. It’s a fairly hackneyed story. The plot has holes you could drive a truck through; Blomkvisgt is Larsson’s wish-fulfillment alter-ego; and Salander is nothing but a stroppy teenager who refuses to get on with anyone. For all Fincher’s fanatical control, he can’t dispel the stench of half-baked cheese which hangs over the source material.
    The story really wants to be Silence of the Lambs but unfortunately Stieg Larsson is not in the same league as Thomas Harris

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  • Redjester

    I think I might be in the minority here in that I absolutely adored the film. Along with The Ghostwriter and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, this is probably the film that has had the highest rewatch value for me the last two or three years.

  • boo

    Dont do your “own thing” the book is soooo amazing and your going to f&!* it all up. Get over yourself or let someone else do it. This movie needs to get made. If you dont have time let someone who really does do it. Seriously…….