The Oscar-Nominated Actress Who Almost Starred In The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

Acclaimed author Stieg Larsson's novel "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" quickly became an international bestseller. In 2010, just five years after the novel's debut, director David Fincher's hunt for the perfect girl to play heroine Lisbeth Salander in the novel's film adaptation became highly publicized news. At the time, word was circulating that many big Hollywood starlets were in the running against a few more up-and-coming actresses (via IndieWire). The most talked-about candidates at that time included Scarlett Johansson, Ellen Page, Natalie Portman, Sophie Lowe, and Katie Jarvis.

As we now know, the role ultimately went to "The Social Network" star Rooney Mara, who absolutely nailed the part. However, even after the film was released, the press continued to talk about the casting process for the role and asked the women who were in the running to play Lisbeth about their experience auditing for the iconic part (via ET Online).

Carey Mulligan auditioned for the part three times

One of the most highly anticipated actresses up for the role of Lisbeth was "An Education" star Carey Mulligan. In an interview with Little White Lies podcast, the actress explained she made it quite far in the casting process. "I auditioned three times" (via IndieWire). She then explained that director David Fincher had a very specific vision for the part of Lisbeth.

Mulligan said, "The first audition I did, I don't think I was sort of in his mind for it. So the first audition I did for the casting director without him. And then the second was with him and the third one was with him. He is very specific. He tells you exactly what he wants you to do. He's very kind. I was intimidated, but he was very ... He's very direct. I like people who are direct." She hoped to land the part because she believed it would be a turning point in her career. 

Mulligan expressed she was tired of playing "young-looking" parts and wanted a chance to play a more mature, dramatic role. "It was such a great character. But he was just very, yeah, very specific, very direct, very honest, and quite brief – with me, at least ... But that's okay." Despite being turned down for the part, Mulligan went on to have a very impressive career, which includes starring roles in "The Great Gatsby," "Wildlife," and "Promising Young Woman" (via IMDb).