Diary: The girl with the star role

So we now have the first pictures of 25-year-old Rooney Mara in the role of the year: the goth bisexual computer hacker Lisbeth Salander, in David Fincher's English-language version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. The accompanying interview in W magazine does not, I'm afraid, dispel troubling rumours that the stars, Mara and Daniel Craig, will be "doing" Swedish accents in the film. However, Fincher does reveal the names of some of the others who auditioned for the role at a time when any actress seen to have cut her hair was said to be desperate to land it (viz Carey Mulligan, Emma Watson). Natalie Portman, he explains, was too exhausted after shooting three other films back-to-back. Scarlett Johansson was "too sexy". Jennifer Lawrence was "too tall". Mara's winning moment came when she screen-tested a graphic scene, which required her to insert something large into something small belonging to another character. "That's Salander's big scene," said Fincher. "We had to see if they could do it."

* Apropos my prediction yesterday that former future Labour leader Miliband (D)'s association with Sunderland FC would cost him the crucial votes of Newcastle fans in his South Shields constituency, a local Tory councillor has launched the first volley of an inevitably ugly battle. (This is Newcastle supporters we're talking about, after all.) David Potts of South Tyneside Council took to Twitter to complain about the ex-Foreign Sec's predicted role as a non-executive director on a salary said to be £50,000. "If I knew he was that cheap I'd have offered him 50k years ago," Potts declared. "What a wanker." Giddy with irritation, Potts then tweeted Miliband (D) directly, saying, "David, I'll give you a grand in cash if you teach my girlfriend how to cook." Confronted by The Jarrow and Hebburn Gazette about his comments, Potts was unrepentant, and repeated his unsavoury slur.

* Not a minute too soon, Nick "29 Shags" Clegg has acquired a new press spokesman. Cabinet Secretary Gus O'Donnell conducted an official review to confirm the bleeding obvious: that the Deputy PM's office was, in the words of PR Week, "underpowered in strategic comms". So the Cabinet Office has drafted in James Sorene, the Department of Health's head of news, to stand in front of Clegg and deflect eggs. Yesterday's Guardian asked whether the Lib Dems were "staring into the abyss", while the Spectator declared the "Death of the Lib Dems". Still, the junior Coalition partner can count on Rupert and Co to keep the faith even without Sorene's expert assistance: a sympathetic interview in The Sun revealed that someone recently whispered to Clegg in a supermarket queue that they thought he was doing a good job. (Maybe they mistook him for Justin King.) It was puffed as "the Deputy PM's most open interview ever". Piers Morgan may dispute that.

* On the subject of Morgan and Murdoch, Piers held a cocktail party in New York this week (sadly, I had an appointment with Come Dine With Me that night) to launch his new CNN show. He told guests he'd emailed his old boss to request an interview, to which Rupert replied, "Thank you very much indeed for your kind invitation, but your chances are less than zero. I wish you good luck, but I do not wish you success." Charming old codger, isn't he?

* Another sorry tale of sanctimony from behind the Speaker's Chair. Tory MP Mark Pritchard is famed for his politesse, yet even he shares his party's simmering disdain for the Cuban-heeled Jon Bercow. Told by stickler Senor Bercow that no, he – order! – couldn't – ORDER! – ask a question in the House because he'd been absent at the start of some statement or other, Pritchard was moved to write an angry letter, explaining to the Speaker that he had, in fact, been present at the start of said statement, but had popped out for a quick tinkle. Later, Pritchard came upon Senor Bercow in the corridor behind the Speaker's Chair, and (reports suggest) the little fellow rounded on him: "The courtesy of the House," cried Senor Bercow indignantly, "is that Honourable Members should stand aside when the Speaker passes by... You will obey the courtesies of the House!" To which Mr Pritchard replied: "You are not fucking royalty, Mr Speaker!" LOL: Pwned.

highstreetken@independent.co.uk

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Guru Careers: Graduate Resourcer / Recruitment Account Executive

£18k + Bonus: Guru Careers: We are seeking a bright, enthusiastic and internet...

Reach Volunteering: Chair and trustees sought for YMCA Bolton

VOLUNTARY ONLY - EXPENSES REIMBURSED: Reach Volunteering: Bolton YMCA is now a...

Tradewind Recruitment: Geography Teacher

£150 - £180 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Geography Teacher Geography teach...

Tradewind Recruitment: Geography Teacher

£150 - £180 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Geography Teacher Geography teach...

Day In a Page

Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
Why the cost of parenting has become so expensive

Why the cost of parenting has become so expensive

Today's pre-school child costs £35,000, according to Aviva. And that's but the tip of an iceberg, says DJ Taylor
Fifa corruption: The officials are caught in the web of US legal imperialism - where double standards don't get in the way

Caught in the web of legal imperialism

The Fifa officials ensnared by America's extraterritorial authority are only the latest examples of this fearsome power, says Rupert Cornwell
Bruce Robinson: Creator of Withnail and I on his new book about Jack the Ripper

'Jack the Ripper has accrued a heroic aura. But I'm going after the bastard'

The deaths of London prostitutes are commonly pinned on a toff in a top hat. But Bruce Robinson, creator of Withnail and I, has a new theory about the killer's identity
Fifa presidential election: What is the best way to see off Sepp Blatter and end this farce?

Michael Calvin's Last Word

What is the best way to see off Sepp Blatter and end this farce?
Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

Art attack

Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
10 best wedding gift ideas

It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

Paul Scholes column

With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards