A GIRL More Perky

Currently playing after five weeks in a limited number of American theaters is the Swedish film of Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

Meanwhile, plans are moving ahead for the Hollywood version; the Sunday Times of London announces that Carey Mulligan has won the role of the book’s tatooed heroine, Lisbeth Salander. The Times notes that “The new version may be relocated to Canada as a compromise for American audiences.”  Of the film currently in U.S. theaters, the Times says, “It was popular in Scandinavia but its subtitles have prevented it becoming a mainstream hit in America, where it opened last month.”

Those pesky Americans; they can’t handle subtitles or non-North-American settings. Perhaps the perception is that they also prefer their punk heroines a bit more perky (below, Noomi Rapace, in character as Salander in the Swedish movie on the left; Carey Mulligan, as herself, on the right).

It wasn’t so long ago that many wondered if Americans could handle a trilogy of books in translation, set in Sweden, with decidedly dark themes. The one believer was the publisher, Knopf. They were so confident that they announced a 100,000 copy first printing, which they increased to 150,000 before publication. That number seems laughable now; taken together, the first two volumes have sold 2.4 million copies in the U.S. and Knopf has announced a 500,000 printing for the final volume in the trilogy, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (numbers from USA Today).

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest
Stieg Larsson
Retail Price: $27.95
Hardcover: 576 pages
Publisher: Knopf – (2010-05-25)
ISBN / EAN: 030726999X / 9780307269997

Random House Audio; UNABR; 9780739384190; $40.
OverDrive WMA Audiobook

2 Responses to “A GIRL More Perky”

  1. marin younker Says:

    as if the news of a U.S. version could get any worse…ugh.

  2. Helen Gibson Says:

    Aaraggh! What I loved, loved, loved about the Swedish version IS because it’s Swedish. Duh The casting was superb and I can’t believe an American version can do any better. I love Carey Mulligan but not for this role. Better they choose Archie Panjabi “Kalinda” in TV’s The Good Wife. At least she has the looks and darker personality.