The Fifty Shades of Grey movie is still a long way off, but the project has begun the process of moving forward, as a director for the adaptation of the best-selling novel by E.L. James has been found.
That director is Sam Taylor-Johnson, who directed the 2009 drama Nowhere Boy, about the childhood of John Lennon in Liverpool. It was during the filming of that movie that Taylor-Johnson met her husband, actor Aaron Johnson, who is twenty-four years her junior.
“I am excited to be charged with the evolution of Fifty Shades of Grey from page to screen,” said Taylor-Johnson in a statement. “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.”
E.L. James was the one who broke the news on Twitter earlier today, and an announcement from Universal Pictures co-chairman Donna Langley and Focus Features CEO James Schamus made the news official.
“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,” said producer Michael De Luca in a statement. “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.”
The three controversial, erotic Fifty Shades novels have sold over 70 million copies worldwide, prompting Universal and Focus Features to snatch up the movie rights for a whopping $5 million. The film studios have brought in writer Kelly Marcel to write the script for the first film in the series, with DeLuca and Dana Brunetti producing.