Noomi Rapace as Lisbeth Salander

Noomi Rapace is the Swedish actress playing the part of Lisbeth Salander in the Millennium movies. Initially questioned whether she could handle the strong and unusual role of Lisbeth, she has risen throughout the movies. Today, her critically acclaimed part as Lisbeth has awarded her with multiple prizes from different Swedish juries. 

Noomi Rapace, née Noomi Norén, was born in Järna, outside Stockholm, Sweden. Her father was Rogelio Durán, a Spanish Flamenco singer, and her mother is Nina Norén, a Swedish actress. When she was five years old, she moved with her mother and stepfather to Flúðir, Iceland, where they stayed for three years. She gained her first acting experience when she played a non-speaking role in “Í skugga hrafnsins” by Hrafn Gunnlaugsson when she was eight years old.

Seventeen years old, she debuted on TV with the part of Lucinda Gonzales in the series “Tre Kronor”. 1998 to 1999, Noomi Rapace studied at Skara Skolscen. The following years, she worked at a couple of smaller theaters in Sweden until she was engaged at Swedens two finest theaters, Stockholms stadsteater and The Royal Dramatic Theatre in 2003. Until this date, she has participated in many Swedish plays and movies.

In 2010, Noomi Rapace was awarded for her leading actress role in the Swedish “Män som hatar kvinnor” (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) with a guldbagge (a Swedish Oscar) as well as Dagens Nyheters kulturpris.

Noomi Rapache is married to actor Ola Rapace, and together they have a son, Lev.

Quotes (translated)

“I’m interested in the darker aspects of mankind, that which is not easy or well balanced. The cracks.” (DN 2007-11-23)

“We need more extreme movies in Sweden, personal projects not necessarily aimed towards a big audience. I think such goals (big audiences) inhibits creativity” (DN 2007-11-23)

By Editor

344 thoughts on “Noomi Rapace as Lisbeth Salander”
  1. Noomi Rapace nailed Lisabeth Salander – beautfully interesting. The cast in general, was good, but Noomi was perfect! – it’s all about the quality & not the bottom line Hollywood dollar – not Hollywood style at all. Nice Touch.

    Sadly, I am to witness Hollyood’s flawed potrayal of Steig’s Millineum – I am sure, – true to Hollywood’s usual style – some one gorgeously plastic, Pamela Anderson’s too old, but some one like that. And Mikael Blomkvist will be probably a George Clooney type…Hurray for Plastic Hollywod… And all that jazz…

    Y.Drushella, California,

    yes…did you notice that all of the older adults looked “normal”..probably no plastic and they were beautiful…

    diane L., 6 February 2011

    Reply to this comment
  2. I read all the Books long before seeing the Swedish Movies of Steig’s Books. I loved the Books and was half afraid to watch the Films but was totally wiped out by Ms Rapace’s take on Lisbeth Slander. I’ve seen Part 2 and 3 of the Movies at this point and intend buying all 3 on D.V.D (the Swedish versions). What a wonderful and courageous writer Mr Larrson was and that was matched by Ms Rapce’s peformance in the films. Best Book to Movie Films I have seen in a very long time. What was so good about the incidental criminal characters was that they were so ordinary yet so evil. The Films reminded me very strongly of Ingmar Bergman and his wonderful way of depicting the pain and desperation of human existence.

    Martin A. Egan,

  3. I watched all 3 movies in swedish with english subtitles on UK tv and was totally enthralled from the first movie to the last. They prompted me to buy all 3 books i have just second finished reading the girl with a dragon tattoo which is as enthralling as the movie thank you for such excellent entertainment Noomi Rapache was perfect as Lisbeth Salander as was Michael Nyqvist as Mikael Blomkvist

    stemcn uk,

  4. Noomi Rapace I heard never heard of. I read the trilogy and usually the films never match the books. However Noomi just blew me out of the water with her performance as Lisabeth. Incredible, brilliant , stunning and breath takingly good. Whatever award the Swedis people have bestowed on her if fully deserved. Magic.

    Tom Kelly,

  5. I was enthralled by the books and Noomi played the character of Lisbeth brilliantly! I’m really hoping the 4th book comes out soon and the follow up film with Noomi as the lead character again.

    Nick, Norwich. UK.,

  6. The film is a very fine and professional work. Hollywood could*t have done it better. Noomi Rapache is absolutely brilliant in this role. Extremely good Skandinavien work like this, we love to see.

    Elvar Jakobsson,

    1. One can never get tired of watching this! I have the extended sweetish version in a usb drive so I don’t lose it.

      – Daniela Fernandes,

  7. Hi, I just watched The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, i loved it. I can’t wait for The Girl Who Played with Fire.


  8. i thought both movies were great, but Hollywood will ruin the movie with

    other actors , They can not match these top actors. Please no George



    1. Absolutely right ! Hollywood will only adulterate and commercialize the trilogy with more craps and bullshits. My money are on the swedish films.

      – Jsw,

  9. I think she’s a brilliant choice for the role of Lisbeth. Just the way Larsson described Salander.


  10. Noomi and the other actors cannot, repeat cannot be topped by Hollywood junkfest – however, as far as looks and atmosphere, Samantha Ronson is a good Lisbeth backup – she is not an actress however…..Lindsey could play Miriam Wu! Why no Noomi or Lisbeth t-shirts and clothing yet? How come in the USA, the release of the films is so limited? Is Hollywoodjunk afraid????

    Ilona stuck in Chicago,

  11. Noomi played her part in the movie The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo extremely well. She became the girl and deserves the American Oscar for this part. I just wish that she could play in the rest of the Millemium series movies as well.


  12. Just saw “…Played With Fire” having seen “…Dragon Tattoo” a few weeks ago. Noomi Rapace is phenomenal. She owns this role. A Hollywood remake is so unnecessary & can’t possibly be as good as these originals. No known Hollywood actress has the talent to pull this off. Can’t imagine what a mess they will make of this story. Noomi Rapace deserves all the accolades coming her way. I hope her other films make it to the US. Would pay to see her in anything.

    If there should be a 4th film, she simply MUST do it!!!!


  13. WoW, I just saw the movie, great, great and really great. I wish Stieg Larsson was still alive to receive his due. I wonder how he faired finacially the last 10 or so years of his life. Tremendous subjects involved in movie ahhh, such a relief to see. Thank you


  14. I’ve seen both movies and can’t say enough good things about Noomi Rapace and Michael Nyqvist – they’re exactly as I pictured the characters when reading the books. Bravo to both of them and to Stieg Larsson for a fabulous storyline. I agree with the other comments – Hollywood won’t do these books justice.


  15. as an american I agree that their is no way they will be as good as the swedish version why mess with a good thing and as far as Lisbeth their is no one who will be able to fill the shoes of NOOMI RAPACE !!!

    Can not wait until , the next two movies are available in the states!!


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