Taylor-Johnson with husband, Aaron JohnsonWell, now this is what we call progress! The Fifty Shades of Grey movie may not have its hotly, highly anticipated leading man and lady just yet, but it does now have a director -- OFFICIALLY. Yes, there was some buzz a few weeks back about Joe Wright being the Chosen One. That proved false, but now we've got actual confirmation in the form of a tweet from E.L. James herself, an announcement from Universal Pictures and Focus Features, as well as a statement from producer Michael De Luca, all informing us that the flick will be helmed by ... drum roll, please ... Sam Taylor-Johnson. Sam, as in Samantha! A female director -- hallelujah!
And wait, brace yourself for even more good news about the pick ...
De Luca notes that Taylor-Johnson has a "unique ability to gracefully showcase complex relationships dealing with love, emotion, and sexual chemistry," which will "make her the ideal director to bring Christian and Anastasia’s relationship to life." He goes on to acknowledge that "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.”
If you need proof to back up De Luca's claims, look no further than her current project, a film based on the seductive turn of the century novel A Reliable Wife by Robert Goorlick. What's more, in '06, Taylor-Johnson directed a short erotic film entitled "Death Valley." It appeared in a compilation, which was "intended to illuminate the points where art meets sexuality," called Destricted, according to IMDb. Sounds like that may have been the clincher, eh? And she also got acclaim for Nowhere Boy, a drama about John Lennon's childhood in Liverpool.
In response to the exciting announcement, Taylor-Johnson released a statement as well, which reads:
I am excited to be charged with the evolution of Fifty Shades of Grey from page to screen. For the legions of fans, I want to say that I will honor the power of Erika’s book and the characters of Christian and Anastasia. They are under my skin too.
Love it! If she really is as in sync with fans' desires as she seems to be, chances are high that we'll definitely get the film we've been waiting for.
What do you think about this directorial pick?
Image via Nick Step/Wikimedia