Stieg Larsson series in good hands, says Millennium trilogy star Michael Nyqvist
Actor who played journalist Michael Blomqvist opposite Noomi Rapace's Lisbeth Salander in Swedish film adaptations of bestselling books says David Lagercrantz, who wrote fourth instalment, 'is a very good author'
Controversy and accusations of grave robbing shrouded the recent release of The Girl in the Spider’s Web, the continuation of Stieg Larsson’s bestselling Millennium trilogy. But the book has found a supporter in one of the trilogy's biggest fans, actor Michael Nyqvist, who played the investigative journalist Mikael Blomkvist in the Swedish-language film adaptations of the Millennium books.
Larsson died in 2004, and this fourth episode in the crime novel series - following The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played with Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest - was commissioned by the Swedish journalist and author's estate, to the displeasure of some loyal supporters. Even Eva Gabrielsson, Larsson’s partner of more than three decades, was indignant about the book, written by his compatriot David Lagercrantz.
“David [Lagercrantz] is a very good author,” Michael Nyqvist told a small group of journalists at the Toronto Film Festival, where his new film, Colonia, is set for its world premiere. “He wrote the book I am Zlatan Ibrahimovic and a lot of good things before that. I think they put that story in very good hands.”
It is easy to find fault with Lagercrantz’s involvement in one of this summer’s most anticipated book releases, alongside Harper Lee’s Go Set a Watchman and Jonathan Franzen’s Purity. The journalist/author was accused of taking too much liberty in the autobiography of soccer star Ibrahimovic which he ghostwrote.
Nyqvist confesses to apprehension about what will become of the Millennium series. “When we did the three films, it had an integrity in that because we knew it [has] a start, a middle and an end. And I know Stieg [Larsson]’s mission about it,” said Nyqvist. “I’m a little bit afraid now that it’s gonna [continue as a franchise] that never stops.”
The actor, who played opposite Noomi Rapace’s vengeful hacker Lisbeth Salander in all three Swedish-language films of the books, isn't sure he will still be fit for the role when a film adaptation of Spider’s Web is made. “[The character] has to go older also, you know? … But I can’t see that they should stop when they want to have money. I think there’s gonna be a new book every second year.”
Nyqvist didn't deny he might be interested in reprising his most recognised part to date. “No, I won't say, ‘I wouldn’t touch it’, but I would think about it a lot before saying yes to it."
Chuckling, he added: "I should play Mikael Blomkvist going on 60 if they’re still interested in that.”