'Fifty Shades' Movie Gets a Director: Sam Taylor-Johnson

Fifty Shades Movie Sam Taylor-Johnson

We've been following news of Fifty Shades' journey to the screen for some time now, from Bret Easton Ellis' real or provocatively made-up involvement with the screenplay—he's no longer attached either way—to Gus Van Sant shooting a test reel in a bid to win the director's chair.

Now comes word from SlashFilm that a director has been announced: Sam Taylor-Johnson, whose only other film was 2009's John Lennon biopic Nowhere Boy. Rumors were abound that Taylor-Johnson's husband, Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Lennon in Nowhere Boy, Kick-Ass, the upcoming Godzilla reboot), might play Christian Grey, but those reports were quickly squashed.

Taylor-Johnson is the third female member of the crew, joining producer Dana Brunetti and screenwriter Kelly Marcel. Of course, Fifty Shades was written by female author E.L. James, so it's nice to see a major Hollywood production mostly controlled by women.

Deadline New York posted a statement from producer Michael De Luca on the decision to hire Taylor-Johnson:

Sam’s unique ability to gracefully showcase complex relationships dealing with love, emotion and sexual chemistry make her the ideal director to bring Christian and Anastasia’s relationship to life. E.L. James’ characters and vivid storytelling require a director who is willing to take risks and push the envelope where needed, and Sam is a natural fit.

No cast information is available at this time, so feel free to speculate wildly. I haven't read the books, so I'll just say James Spader and Maggie Gyllenhaal...oh wait.

Who would you cast? Or do you care?

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Jane Wiseman's picture
Jane Wiseman from living outside of Albuquerque/in Minneapolis is reading Look to Windward by Iain M. Banks June 20, 2013 - 9:08am

They should be so lucky as to make a film one-twentieth as interesting as "The Secretary," especially with such dismal material to work from.

Lauri Day's picture
Lauri Day June 20, 2013 - 9:42am

That trio of "50 Shades of Grey" is the worst drek ever.... and the books have already lost their popular momentum, especially after the news reportings of the finding of those 3 kidnapped "sex slaves" in Ohio. The social climate has changed and they're making this movie too late, on the downside of the "interest spike" that the public had. If they HAD to make this crap into a movie, they're doing it a year too late.


Nathan Scalia's picture
Nathan Scalia from Kansas is reading so many things June 20, 2013 - 9:50am

I don't think they're looking at this whole thing very sensibly.

The books were popular because, even reading it on a crowded subway, there is a degree of privacy and "class" associated with it. Tis literature, and therefore refined.

Saying you saw the movie is the same thing as bragging that you just watched porn. Not sure this is going to take off the same way the books did.

Of course, I'm speaking having not read the books and with no plans to see the movie, so I suppose I'm not really being fair in assuming the movie is going to be dressed-up porn. But I think that most other people will, and the social stigma of seeing an erotic movie in theaters is going to impact the success of this film.

alexchap's picture
alexchap from Buford, GA is reading Tales of the Black Clock June 20, 2013 - 6:28pm

Every female in my family will be in attendance opening night. I do not think most people reading this website are the target audience.

Colton Adrian's picture
Colton Adrian from Williamsburg, VA is reading a book about souls June 22, 2013 - 11:36am

Gosling will be Christian Grey I bet