As we previewed in a blogpost last October, DC Entertainment’s Vertigo imprint will publish a graphic version of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo this coming November. The Scottish “Tartan noir” novelist Denise Mara – another female crime writer Larsson is likely to have admired because she reflected his interest in both detective tales and graphic novels — has been tapped to write the adaptation.
Lee Bermejo has done the striking cover reproduced here and, refreshingly, it is an entirely different take on the Salander we’ve become accustomed to seeing on book covers and posters, which now look bland in comparison.
Bermejo’s credits include being both author and illustrator of the New York Times best-seller Batman: Noel (a riff on Dickens’ A Christmas Carol), and he describes his vision this way: “I’m beyond excited to be doing the covers for this series. It’s always fun to do a character that’s a bit left of center, and Lisbeth certainly fits that bill. Plus it was a nice challenge to try and visualize her differently than she’s been interpreted on film.”
Argentinean artist Leonardo Manco, like Mara, has worked extensively on Vertigo’s Hellblazer (Prince of Darkness) series, while Italian artist Andrea Mutti first worked with Vertigo on the graphic novel The Executor.
Would Larsson have approved? We think so, at least in principle. As we noted last October, Larsson was a very graphics-oriented thinker and a decent artist himself, creating cover designs, cartoons, and illustrations for the early science fiction zines he published as a teenager and young adult, and always paying attention to graphics during his long stint at the TT news service and to the design of Expo magazine. And all three of his books, particularly The Girl Who Played with Fire, are tinged with influences from the worlds of superheroes, SF, and graphic novel adventures.
We asked John-Henri Holmberg, Stieg’s friend since their youth and both science fiction fans, and he said, “I think Stieg well might have approved of a comics adaption of his characters. Though I also believe that in such a case, he might well have wanted to write the comic scripts himself, and partly or entirely separately from the novels. However, I’m absolutely certain that he would never have relinquished control of his characters, story lines, or intellectual content.”
In any event, we are eager to see the results, and the graphic novels of the other two books of Millennium are scheduled to follow in 2013 and 2014.