• The Hollywood Reporter on LinkedIn
  • Follow THR on Pinterest

'Dragon Tattoo' Director Takes a Shot at David Fincher's In-the-Works American Remake

Niels Arden Oplev unleashes some serious skepticism and "anger about the remake."

Niels Arden Oplev, who directed The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, has unleashed some serious skepticism about the American remake that David Fincher is currently directing for Columbia. The pointed words and spirited defense of original Girl Noomi Rapace comes in an interview he gave to  Word & Film, a cool new website that explores the cross-section of Hollywood and books that Random House just launched. 

Here's what Oplev had to say:

The only thing that’s annoying to me is that the Sony PR machine is trying to make their Lisbeth Salander the lead Lisbeth Salander. That’s highly unfair because Noomi has captured this part and it should always be all her. That’s her legacy in a way I can’t see anyone competing with. I hope she gets nominated for an Oscar. I know a lot of Academy members have seen the film and liked it because every time I go to LA I meet so many people who have seen my version of it. Even in Hollywood there seems to be a kind of anger about the remake, like, ‘Why would they remake something when they can just go see the original?’ Everybody who loves film will go see the original one. It’s like, what do you want to see, the French version of “La Femme Nikita” or the American one? You can hope that Fincher does a better job.

While Oplev is a hot director who’s starting to nab English-language gigs since Tattoo hit the big-time, he still has some learnin’ to do.

First of all, comparing Fincher’s (still in production) version to the American version of La Femme Nikita is way off the mark. Yeah, sure, the 1993 remake of the Luc Besson film was pointless, but we’re talking about Fincher here, not John Badham, the high-flying commercial director who was already heading into decline (and that year also had Another Stakeout in theaters. What, you don’t remember?). Fincher is more artful than that, and, I’m sorry, anybody and everybody who loves film knows that. 

Two, even if Badham did direct the remake of Dragon Tattoo, more people would see that in the opening weekend than all who have seen the Swedish version. That’s the way Hollywood works. Doesn’t mean it’ll be better, but it does mean it’ll be seen by more people.

And not just in the U.S. ...