Stellan Skarsgard at home in 'Dragon Tattoo'
If Stellan Skarsgard's name doesn't ring a bell, his face certainly will, since he's played major roles in Hollywood movies such as "Good Will Hunting" and "Mamma Mia."
So taking part in David Fincher's English-language version of "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" is par for the course for the Swede.
In another way, however, "Dragon Tattoo" offers Skarsgard, 60, one of his most unusual parts. It's a Hollywood-produced, English-language adaptation of decidedly Swedish material - the first entry in Stieg Larsson's best-selling "Millennium Trilogy" - and it's been shot in Sweden by the American Fincher, with an American star (Rooney Mara) and a British star (Daniel Craig).
amNewYork spoke with Skarsgard about the movie, which hits theaters tomorrow night.
In general, how do you feel about remakes? I'm fine with remakes if the remake is better. The problem usually with remakes has been that some brilliant European auteur has made a movie, and then some Hollywood executive says, "That was a great film - let's do it." So they take away everything that's edgy, everything that's personal, and then they hire a generic director to do it.
Obviously, Fincher's not a generic director. When it comes to this film, it's not like a remake of an Ingmar Bergman movie - it's another movie based on the same book. And it's actually made by an auteur. It's made by David Fincher, who's one of the greatest directors in the world.
Is it true that he likes to shoot some scenes dozens of times? It is true. He said to me, when we met the first time: "You know, this is not gonna be fun, because I do 40 takes." And I said, "I don't work if it's not fun, so let's [do] 40 takes that are fun to make." And I think it was.But it depends on what kind of actor you are.
Was it at all strange to shoot a Hollywood movie in English in Sweden? I've filmed in English in Sweden before, but that's been with [director] Lars Von Trier and in another part of Sweden. But it's the first time in 20 years I've been able to go straight from my own bed to work every morning, and that was very, very pleasant.
Since your sons Gustaf, Bill and Alexander ("True Blood") are all actors, when can we expect a Skarsgard family movie? [Laughs] We could do that. We could do that. I can bring in my mother, too, and we can cast quite a crew.