‘Dragon Tattoo’ Follow-Up ‘The Girl Who Played With Fire’ Talks Begin With Writer Steve Zaillian

When David Fincher told us at Comic-Con that there are no plans to shoot back-to-back follow-ups for his upcoming adaptation of Stieg Larsson’s “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,” he was no doubt telling the truth. Still, it is the first chapter in a trilogy, and a hugely popular one at that. It should come as no surprise then to hear that Sony is already making moves to get development on those follow-ups into the mix.

Which brings me to today’s news. Deadline reports that the studio “has begun deal talks” with writer Steve Zaillian, who wrote the “Dragon Tattoo” script as well as the currently filming Brad Pitt/Jonah Hill-starring baseball pic, “Moneyball.” It is usually considered premature to start planning a sequel, even for a trilogy like this, when the first movie isn’t even out yet. But between the talent already involved — Fincher, Zaillian and confirmed star Daniel Craig — and the still-rising popularity of the books, Sony’s making a pretty safe bet here. It’ll be interesting to see if Fincher returns for either or both follow-ups; he’s got about a million things listed with his name on IMDb, and Disney’s “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” in particular has been ramping up lately.

The female lead role of Lisbeth Salander has yet to be cast, but expect word to filter down soon as “Dragon Tattoo” is set to go into production this fall.