She starred in David Fincher's The Social Network as Erica Albricht, Mark Zuckerberg's girlfriend who breaks up with him in the film's opening scene. Though her performance was quite short, Mara was impressive enough there was even some Oscar buzz surrounding her work. For me the look of hurt, pain, shame and betrayal on Erica's face in one of the beginning scenes of the film is simply unforgettable.
Fincher chose Mara to play the much coveted role of Lisbeth Salander in his version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, though Mara doesn't believe he did so because of her work in The Social Network, where she spent only four days on the set:
AWARDSLINE: Any idea what it was that made David Fincher decide you were the one to play Lisbeth?
MARA: I don’t know. Initially he didn’t want to see me. I had just finished Social Network and I was something completely different in that. I am all the things in that movie that Salander was not. So it was hard for him to wrap his head around the notion that I could be this other girl. I think when he saw me the first time [for Lisbeth], it dawned on him that I could be. I’m not sure what it is he saw in me that made him know that I could be the girl. I think he was trying to find someone who at their core had a lot in common with this girl.
For the role of Salander, Mara’s eyebrows were bleached, her hair was cut short and asymmetric, while her eyebrow, ears, and nipple were pierced. She also spent nearly a year in Sweden preparing for the film and filming the footage. Mara's spectacular performance earned her Golden Globe and Academy Award nomination, among many others.
Her feature projects include Untitled Charlie Kaufman and Spike Jonze Project where she will star opposite Joaquim Phoenix and Amy Adams, Terrence Mallick's Lawless, Steven Soderbergh's Bitter Pill and possibly the sequels for "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" - though Mara has expressed the desire to star in them and said it would be great for them to be shot at the same time, there is still no official word from Sony.
Though she has some weaker moments in her career - as the role in horrible "The Nightmare on Elm Street" her work in Fincher's movies is stunning. As Lisbeth Salander she brought in such incredible magnetism and charisma with her performance, also hiding a hint of compassion and the sense of justice - she captured the very essence of her character. That's not something that can be said about many actors.
|On the set of The Bitter Pill|
|With Ryan Gosling on the set of Lawless|