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The Pornification of Lisbeth Salander

The Pornification of Lisbeth Salander

I have officially become angry at the latest poster to appear online for The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. This one as you can see shows Rooney Mara with her breast exposed. The previous ones had Daniel Craig’s hand over her clearly naked boob, but this one goes all the way. It’s risque enough that people have been labeling it NSFW (not safe for work)

I don’t know exactly what to make of it. I’ve read the books, I’ve thought about Lisbeth (a lot) and while I believe she is one of the most interesting characters on screen I’ve seen in a long time (I’ve seen all the Swedish movies and read all the books and even wrote a chapter for an anthology about my hopes for the Hollywood film), I never expected to see a poster of Lisbeth topless. Never. I don’t care that this is for the international version, it still doesn’t work.

It just doesn’t seem to me to be in keeping with her character. Lisbeth is deeply private. She’s been assaulted, she’s been treated like crap by everyone who was supposed to take care of her. If she were a real person I would think she would kick the ass of the photographer who asked her to take her shirt off in public for a photo shoot. I’m pretty sure she would never even participate in a photo shoot, but I know I’m taking it a little far with that last thought.

Look at the poster for the Swedish film. This was created for a European film (where they are supposedly more free with their sexuality which seems to be one reason why the international poster of the American movie has nudity) but look, Lisbeth is fully clothed (and also alone without Mikael.)

When I see a poster like the one for the Americanized version I can’t help but get nervous. This is going to be a trilogy targeted at adults starring a beloved, well-known character. Seeing this poster I start to think that maybe Lisbeth is going to be sexed up throughout the film so that word of mouth with guys will be really positive a little along the lines of yes, she does kick ass but she is so hot and by the way there are BOOBS! To me, this is already a film that appeals to both men and women and by men and women, I mean people over 25 (or gasp! people over 30). This is a rated R movie so it’s not for the kids anyway. I am sure that the marketers felt it was really important to include Daniel Craig in the poster because he is James Bond after all, and Rooney Mara is just the young woman who eviscerated Jesse Eisenberg in a notable scene from The Social Network.

I’ve already started to read posts about how hot Rooney is with her nipple ring on full display. That’s enough to start my blood boiling. Lisbeth is not supposed to be hot. That’s one of the reasons why we love her so much. She doesn’t play by the rules and now we have a poster that puts her right back into the girl box. Disappointment is a wild understatement for what I am feeling.

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