Ever since finishing up The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, David Fincher has been out of the public eye and hard at work on his new TV series House of Cards. But today, Art of the Title (coming to us via The Playlist) have published an interview with the director which gives us an update on what he’s working on for both the big and small screen.
First, he discusses The Girl Who Played With Fire, the sequel to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, which he says he is still figuring out with writer Steven Zaillian and producer Scott Rudin. He offered no details other than “We’ve got to make it our own thing.”
I imagine it is difficult for Fincher to craft a totally new take on a piece of material when the first (and highly respected) attempt at translating the Stieg Larsson books to the screen was only a couple of years ago.
Fincher never raves on about anything he’s working on, choosing not to be so open with details in case anything falls through. The film is greenlit with Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara both signed on, so Sony definitely want to go through with it. But, Fincher has yet to sign on.
Although, if he is working on it now then I imagine he’ll return, despite some initial doubts. I imagine the pushback date for production was probably to accommodate Fincher too, so he can finish up on the first season of House of Cards.
And on that very point, in the same interview, there are also some details offered up about the Netflix series which is still shooting in Baltimore. Fincher confirms the reports that he will direct the first two episodes of House of Cards and also reveals that James Foley, Joel Schumacher and Charles McDougall have all shot two episodes each. An eclectic bunch of talents.
Foley is perhaps most famous for the terrific adaptation of Glengarry Glen Ross (which also starred House of Cards lead actor Kevin Spacey), but has been absent from the filmmaking world as of late. Schumacher on the other hand has been making a number of films but hasn’t had one with a wide release since The Number 23 (primarily because they’ve all been crummy). Finally, McDougall is an Emmy Award winning TV director who has worked on a large array of TV projects in both Britain and the US.
These are directors who I imagine are pretty easy to handle and could easily come into the world that Fincher has established and play in that world without disrupting it. On that, it’s very interesting for someone who has a directorial role in television to be the one who is running the show. Usually it would be down to the writer to run the show but Fincher has never been someone who particularly adhered to the rule book.
Fincher also discusses working in TV and the challenge it offered, but like many filmmakers who have turned to the smaller screen to tell stories, he finds it an incredibly thrilling medium:
I like television. There’s something amazing about having to put on a show. You have an idea for a scene, you talk it out, it gets hammered out in rough form, you do a rehearsal, you look at it and figure out what’s working, you go away for an hour, and then — bang! — you’re shooting. There’s no navel-gazing at all. Anytime you’re sitting there scratching your chin, you’re taking time away from shooting. It’s a very different discipline. It’s exciting.
The Girl Who Played With Fire currently has no start date and House of Cards will premiere sometime next year.