Opening Credits

Watch 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' Opening Title Sequence

An oily and plastic cacophony of fire and cables

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo 2011 opening credit sequence
Photo: Columbia Pictures

I've been wanting to post this video ever since I first saw the opening title sequence for David Fincher's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and now it's finally available for everyone to watch and I've also included 13 screen captures from the credit sequence, one just below the video and the other 12 on page two.

The sequence is set to the Trent Reznor's remix of Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song" sung by Karen O. and the visuals were created by Blur Studios and the title sequence's creative director, Tim Miller who recently spoke with io9 and had this to say about the sequence's inspiration:

[The title sequence] was always supposed to be a very abstract version of key moments in the book and about Lisbeth. It was really supposed to be her nightmare sequence. Being a hacker is such a big part of her personality and who she was, we needed some imagery for that but it's kind of hard to represent that abstractly. So the ones we came up with were the keyboard elements.

In my review of the film I described the moment as follows: "[T]he music shifts into something of a Nine Inch Nails interpretation of a James Bond title sequence. Carbon fiber imagery begins dripping as oily hands crush soft, anonymous faces and dragons spew fire in a plastic cacophony energized by an industrial remix of Led Zeppelin's 'Immigrant Song'. It's entirely out of place, but if it's your kind of thing, as it is mine, it certainly gets you in the mood to watch a movie."

You can watch the sequence for yourself, though experiencing it in the theater is really the way to go, directly below and io9 also has some early animatics from the sequence's creation as well as more from Miller on how it came into being right here.


The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo 2011 opening credit sequence
Photo: Columbia Pictures

I've included 12 more screen captures from the opening titles on the next page.

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  • MWHollywood85

    I saw this last weekend and also thought; 1) Very out of place. 2) Is Fincher pitching for the next Bond? It was very eerily similar to Goldeneye and World is Not Enough.
    But reading that quote you have here about it being her nightmare gives it alot more context. I also picked up on the imagery they had included from the other two books ie: Hornets & Fire.

  • Jack

    Yeah I didn't like it either. It was like it was made by a different director for a completely differently movie. And don't give me that crap that it fits because it captures Lizbeth's pain and suffering and the theme of misogyny. This sequence was completely out of tone with the rest of the film.

    • Colin

      It did capture the pain and anguish very well in a stylized pulpy and commercial way. It was absoloutley enthralling to watch and it hooks you from the moment the Zepplin track kicks in.

    • Nick

      That's the point. It's as out of tone with the rest of the film as Lisbeth is out of tone with the world around her. She is an unpredictable, uncompromising, aggressive creature in a boring grey-ish world of journalists, lawyers and moguls. This sequence IS Lisbeth.

      • Jack

        I'm referring to the tone and mood of the sequence, not the story of the sequence. Because it was by another director, it didn't seem to fit the rest of the movie.

  • Llama

    It was pretty out of place, but nonetheless I really liked it. Immigrant Song is one of my favorite songs and I like the animation style.

  • Winchester

    If only the film itself had been as effective as the title sequence. As it was, its probably one of the best opening titles in a film in a long while.

  • http://www.switchbladecomb.com Rolocop

    I also found it out of place, especially with the subtle tone of the pre-title scene. I understand the intention of the Nine Inch Nails music video, um, I mean title sequence. But it was much too over the top. There is a way to shake people up during the opening titles, but the way it was overproduced and slick made me laugh at how ridiculous it was. And I don't think I was supposed to snicker at it. The rest of the movie was fine, especially the second half. It took me about an hour to get into it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Josh-Batchelder/602915927 Josh Batchelder

    I absolutely positively LOVED this sequence.

  • http://www.fusioncis.com Fusion CI Studios

    Here's a link to a Case Study for all you ‘effects geeks’ out there re some of the cg fluids work on GWDT opening titles. Fusion CI Studios had the privilege of working with Blur's amazing team on this and created this look at the 'making of' a few of the fluid shots. http://www.fusioncis.com/press/Fusion_GWDT_CaseStudy.pdf