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After a seven-year absence from the silver screen, Lisbeth Salander will return in all of her punk glory next year in The Girl in the Spider's Web. However, the franchise is making a big jump -- moving away from The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo actress Rooney Mara's portrayal in the 2011 film and replacing her with The Crown's Claire Foy. As it turns out, the break wasn't entirely mutual, as Mara reportedly wanted to come back and take another shot at Ms. Salander. The actress opened up ahead of the release of her new film, Una, and said:
I was hopeful to come back, but they decided to do a different thing. It was always a character I wanted to revisit; but that's not what happened.
Though the film received a warm welcome from critics when it debuted back in 2011, David Fincher's The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo wasn't necessarily a commercial smash. As a result, Sony put the franchise on ice for several years, ultimately deciding to move forward with The Girl in the Spider's Web -- which is not a direct sequel to Dragon Tattoo. Don't Breathe's Fede Alvarez was brought in to replace the Zodiac director behind the camera, and now it very much feels like Sony is more or less starting from scratch, despite Rooney Mara telling Yahoo Movies she would have returned.
Of course, it's also worth mentioning that Rooney Mara doesn't hold ownership over the role (which earned her a Best Actress Oscar nod in 2012). She inherited the part of Lisbeth Salander from Prometheus star Noomi Rapace, who portrayed the character in three Swedish-language films inspired by the Millennium trilogy. With Claire Foy about to step in for Mara, there's a case one can make that the role of Salander is almost becoming James Bond-esque.
Despite her desire to return to the role of Lisbeth Salander, Rooney Mara also recognizes the fact working on The Girl in the Spider's Web wouldn't be the same experience as Dragon Tattoo. She also explained:
Nothing would have matched that [initial] experience. Different director, different author of the book. I would have loved to have done it, but I think it probably would have been a letdown in a way. It never would have matched the experience I already had.
With David Fincher no longer attached to the franchise as its director, and the fact that the source material was not even written by the late Stieg Larsson, a palpable sense of distance has been created between Mara and the property. Though she apparently would love to return to play the tech-savvy heroine to round out the originally-planned trilogy, many of the original elements wouldn't fall into place.
Fede Alvarez's The Girl in the Spider's Web will debut in theaters next year on October 19, 2018. Looking beyond the next installment in the Millennium series, take a look at our 2018 movie premiere guide for more information on everything else that's going to debut next year, and check out Rooney Mara in Una, which opens on October 6.