‘Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’ Series in the Works at Amazon; Books Won’t Be Used

     May 26, 2020

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The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is coming back for more ink, albeit on the small screen. Amazon is developing a series centered around Stieg Larsson‘s feminist hero Lisbeth Salander that will not use the author’s Millennium books. Instead, the resourceful hacker will feature in all new stories and situations.

Variety broke the news of the series, which is currently titled The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, and does not have a writer or a lead actress attached. Let me echo my colleague Allie Gemmill in saying that this series needs a female voice behind the camera. The book’s original Swedish title was Men Who Hate Women, and yet somehow, Lisbeth has been co-opted by male filmmakers and perverted into a kind of leather-clad male fantasy. The last time we saw Lisbeth, in 2018’s The Girl in the Spider’s Web, she’d been turned into an action star, and I barely recognized her as the same character played by Noomi Rapace in the original movie trilogy. Amazon needs to take the character back to her roots and drop her companion, journalist Mikael Blomkvist, because he’s always been dead weight.

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Image via Columbia Pictures

Meanwhile, the larger story here is Amazon’s new literary strategy, as Jennifer Salke wants the streamer to become the official home of all your favorite airport books. Amazon already has a Jack Ryan series and a Harry Bosch series, it is currently casting a Jack Reacher series, and it’s developing an Alex Cross series, too. If only Amazon could find a way to acquire the Lincoln Rhyme series from NBC. Then it’d really be in business.

Amazon Studios will produce the new Dragon Tattoo series with Sony Pictures Television, while Left Bank Pictures founder/CEO Andy Harries (Outlander) will executive produce alongside Rob Bullock (The Night Manager).

Over the course of six books, the Lisabeth Salander series has sold more than 100 million copies worldwide. Rapace originated the character onscreen before David Fincher cast Rooney Mara in his chilly remake, which remains his worst film, in my humble, Fincher-loving estimation. Most recently, Claire Foy played the character in Spider’s Web, which was meant to launch a franchise, but instead flopped at the box office.

I know I took a minor jab at Fincher’s Dragon Tattoo adaptation above — I didn’t say it was bad, mind you, just that it’s his weakest movie — but one of the coolest things about that film was its opening title sequence, which was directed by Deadpool helmer Tim Miller. For more on that memorably creepy footage, click here.

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