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Two Film Adaptations of Larsson’s novel The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo: A Semiotic and Audience Reception Study
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Media Studies.
2012 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Stieg Larsson has reached vast audiences with his popular, page-turning crime novels, the Millennium Series. The series tells a story not just for fictional purposes, but to draw attention to what people did not see about the society that Larsson lived in. In 2009, local actors starred in a film adaptation of Larsson’s first novel, which went beyond the Swedish public. In December 2011 an English-language remake based on the same bestseller was released, starring famous Hollywood actors. Considering language can hinder the reach of foreign language movies in international markets and that international and Swedish audiences demands differ, the current research aims to find out how the two movie adaptations diverge in terms of gender representation, production, graphic content, ideological meaning, and cultural representation as they attempt to target their respective audiences. In order to find answers, this thesis adopted a qualitative approach using two different, supporting methods. First a semiotic analysis of a representative scene with a high psychological and graphic impact on the viewer in both movies was conducted. Second, focus group interviews, with International and Swedish audience members, were conducted. The findings suggest that considerable differences exist between the two movies and that audiences have a different pre-conception in the way they perceive the same media product: gender role dynamic has been reversed in the two movies, the American version is more graphic in its display of nudity, and lacks the ideological layer. Furthermore, this study can serve as a basis for future research that could try to statistically represent the way Swedish and international moviegoers draw on the two adaptations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 62 p.
Keyword [en]
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, audience reception, gender roles, content representation
Keyword [sv]
Män som hatar kvinnor
National Category
Communication Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-77603OAI: diva2:534361
2012-06-05, Bang-salen, Karlavägen 104, våning 4 och 5, Stockholm, 14:37 (English)
Humanities, Theology
Available from: 2012-07-02 Created: 2012-06-16 Last updated: 2012-07-02Bibliographically approved

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