'Dragon Tattoo' Sequel Eyes Scarlett Johansson & Natalie Portman For Lisbeth Salander Role

It took six years but Sony has finally decided to on a sequel to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and in the process they're waving bye-bye to David Fincher, Rooney Mara, and Daniel Craig. Not surprising when you consider the combative relationship between Fincher and Sony. Instead it will be Evil Dead and Don't Breathe director Fede Alvarez behind the camera for The Girl in the Spider's Web, and a brand new cast coming aboard. The most important role will be that of computer hacker Lisbeth Salander, and already a couple of big names are in the mix to play her.

Variety says insiders are claiming Natalie Portman and Scarlett Johansson are up to play Salander, although a broader search is still underway. Johansson actually tried out for the role before but Fincher famously fought tooth 'n nail for Mara, and he ultimately got his wish. Whether this helps Johansson or hurts her is anybody's guess. Sony seems to be angling for a total reboot that will cost less than Fincher's film, so I'm a bit surprised they want such high profile/expensive names. Portman and Johansson previously starred together in The Other Boleyn Girl.

The film will feature a script penned by Alvarez, Steven Knight, and Jay Basu, based on the fourth book in the Millennium series. Author Stieg Larsson died in 2004 but the torch was passed to David Lagercrantz who wrote this one and the fifth book. That makes this the first Millennium title adapted into English first. The others were adapted into the popular series of Swedish films that preceded Fincher's version.  Those featured Noomi Rapace as Salander in what was her breakout role.

Here is the book's synopsis, although keep in mind the film might chart a different direction.

She is the girl with the dragon tattoo—a genius hacker and uncompromising misfit. He is a crusading journalist whose championing of the truth often brings him to the brink of prosecution.

Late one night, Blomkvist receives a phone call from a source claiming to have information vital to the United States. The source has been in contact with a young female superhacker—a hacker resembling someone Blomkvist knows all too well. The implications are staggering. Blomkvist, in desperate need of a scoop for Millennium, turns to Salander for help. She, as usual, has her own agenda. The secret they are both chasing is at the center of a tangled web of spies, cybercriminals, and governments around the world, and someone is prepared to kill to protect it . . .

Sony wants The Girl in the Spider's Web ready for theaters on October 5th 2018.