Untangle the Mystery and Watch the Trailer for 'The Girl in the Spider's Web'

The latest film in the crime-thriller series opens nationwide on Friday

November 8, 2018

Computer hacker, vigilante, and all-around badass Lisbeth Salander is back.

But before you go and watch the trailer for Claire Foy's re-imagined character in The Girl in the Spider's Web, let's untangle the web of confusion about what this film really is and how it fits with The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.   

A year after his tragic death, in 2005, Swedish author Stieg Larsson's novel The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was published in his native country. It was followed by The Girl Who Played With Fire the next year and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest the following year. In 2009, Swedish filmmakers and television producers went on to turn each book into a film and create a six-part television miniseries.

American audiences who may not have read the English-translated books finally met the characters, including Salander and Mikael Blomkvist, in 2011 with the U.S. release of the Academy Award-nominated The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo film (which, interestingly, helped Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross win a GRAMMY for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media). 2011 was also the same year that DC Comics created graphic novels for the series as well. 

While Larsson had planned on releasing 10 books, he died of a heart attack before finishing the fourth book. The legal battle over his characters, his series, and his unfinished work continued up until 2015 when The Girl in the Spider's Web by author David Lagercrantz was published. That book was then followed by 2017's The Girl Takes an Eye for an Eye, also written by Lagercrantz.

Okay, so how does The Girl in the Spider's Web movie, which has already been released in Europe, fit into all this? Well, it's Hollywood's attempt at rebooting the entire franchise while also releasing a sequel to the 2011 film. While all the characters are the same, the biggest difference is that the actors playing the two main characters from 2011 have been replaced. Foy takes over as Salander from Rooney Mara and Swedish actor Sverrir Gudnason takes over for Daniel Craig as Blomkvist.

With a new writer re-imagining the world created by Larsson and these new actors on board, it seems as if Hollywood is hoping The Girl in the Spider's Web will jumpstart a band new crime thriller franchise. But, that's only if this first one works.