Irish American acting sensation, Rooney Mara was barely recognizable on the set of her latest film, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”.

The 25-year-old actress is playing the role of feisty Lisbeth Salender, in the film adaption of Stieg Larsson’s novel.

As part of the role, Rooney has dyed and cut her lock, bleached her eyebrows and pierced her lip, brow, nose and nipple.

Snaps of her on location in Sweden show her with black cropped hair and piercings. When she later brought her dog for a walk, she neglected to change and seemed comfortable walking around in her grungy characters clothes.

Talking to W magazine recently, Mara said: “I didn’t even have pierced ears. They put four holes in each ear, and, weirdly, that hurt the most.

“It was all very organised. With [director] David [Fincher] everything is measured and carefully considered. He wants what he sees in his head.”

Rooney bet off stiff competition from several other Hollywood A-listers for the lead role.

The “Social Network” actress stars opposite Daniel Craig, who plays journalist Mikael Blomkvist in the film.

It is expected that the pair will star in the other two films of the trilogy, - The Girl Who Played With Fire and The Girl Who Kicked The Hornets' Next.