Is Dakota Johnson’s ‘Fifty Shades’ styling too immature & budget?


While I’m no fan of Fifty Shades of Grey, I’m starting to get pissed off on behalf of the real fans. These are photos from the Vancouver set of Fifty Shades – they’ve been filming for about a week and a half now, and paparazzi seem to be camped out whenever Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson are filming exteriors. And these exterior set-ups are not giving me any kind of faith that the sex scenes will be done properly either.

I think my biggest problem is how Dakota Johnson is being styled. Right? Granted, I wasn’t paying much attention to the clothes when I read the first Fifty Shades of Grey book, but it was my understanding that Anastasia Steele was a youthful 22-year-old (or 21 or something – early 20s). She was “hip” in a very immature way, sort of like tomboy chic. She’s not glam at all, which is fine. Now look at how they’ve styled Dakota in these two photo sets – first, those God-awful bangs. I can’t. Secondly, her clothes. Jesus. The Anastasia Steele costume – particularly the blue outfit – looks like what Jennifer Garner wears in real life, and that’s not a compliment. In fact, this whole look is very “Jennifer Garner” to me – Garner even has those same bangs these days!! So, is that the goal? Anastasia is the “every woman” much like Garner? The blue outfit reminds me of a kindergarten teacher. Is that really how Ana is supposed to look? I saw her as a pretty girl in overalls, someone who didn’t know about fashion. Not this cutesy crap. Also: I think she’s wearing Uggs in the scene where she kisses Christian. That says it all.

Also – while I doubt anyone will care, last week Marcia Gay Harden joined the cast as Christian’s adopted mother. Marcia is WAY too good for this mess.




Photos courtesy of Fame/Flynet.

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75 Responses to “Is Dakota Johnson’s ‘Fifty Shades’ styling too immature & budget?”

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  1. Dani2 says:

    Anastasia is basically Bella Swan 2.0 (with a dash of E.L James) so this is pretty much exactly how I expected her to look. I still don’t know how they can redeem this movie from the hot mess that was the book, and the fact that E.L James is so involved doesn’t give me much hope either.

  2. Yoli says:

    Her styling is about par with the book….when she first goes to interview Christian she wearing Walmart clothes, it isn’t after she starts dating him/married that she starts wearing better clothing….

  3. Tiffany says:

    Sometimes when there are not full shots for scenes the actors can wear footwear of their choosing which explains the Uggs. From the photos I think that they are getting the wardrobe right.

  4. Frida_K says:

    Low-rent Zooey Deschanel.


    Of course, the whole enchilada is “ick” so what’s some crappy styling on top of it?

    • Louminary says:

      Yes, I don’t think it’s the costuming that’s going to let this movie down

      How about the godawful, embarrassing, juvenile, frankly barely literate writing!!??!! I haven’t read this, I just can’t. But some of the excerpts I’ve come across….does anyone else think the sex scenes read like they’ve been written by someone who has NEVER actually had sex before?

      • Jess says:

        Yes. I totally agree. The writing makes me want to rip the pages out and send the E.L. James to a creative writing class for middle schoolers, though I think that these kids might write better and more sophisticated and mature than she does.

        And yes, Marcia Gay Harden is far too good for this.

  5. Cristina says:

    She looks nothing like what I imagined Ana would look like or dress like. And those bangs…why did they give her bangs?!
    In the photos with the trench coat, I think she’s wearing the famous plum (it was plum right? )dress underneath.
    Also, the Uggs, I think she wears them in-between takes. I don’t think she’ll actually wear them for the movie.

    Jamie on the other hand, is a perfect fit for the role of Christian.

    And yes, Marcia is way too good for this movie.

    • Dani2 says:

      They gave her bangs so that E.L James could fulfill her fantasy of doing Edward 😉

      • blue marie says:

        ha, I can believe it!

      • kristiner says:

        Exactly! I know, I KNOW it’s horribly wrong to say but it has to be said about EL James.

        She is one of the most unfeminine looking woman I’ve ever seen. I honestly thought she was a man in drag wearing the worst bangs black wig ever. That hair is just so damn wiggy.

    • mickey says:


      • Alexandria says:

        Hahahah I know. She stole it from her roommate Kate and wore the damn thing throughout all three books. Like, that says soooo much about Ana’s character: she’s THAT friend who borrows your stuff and NEVER gives it back, lol.

  6. Tig says:

    FWIW- if these scenes are from early on in the books- this is what she’s supposed to dress like- her idea of how to dress to interview CG.

    The UGGs are about keeping warm bet takes- say what you will about them, but they do keep your toes nice and warm!!

  7. littlestar says:

    Honestly, that’s kind of how I pictured how Anna dressed (before Christian glammed her up) in my mind while I read the books. Frumpy, boring, and uninteresting – the character and the clothes.

  8. TeresaGiudice says:

    This has Lifetime original movie written ALL over it. RIP to all these actor’s careers.

  9. lilian says:

    The book is pretty immature and budget. I’m really sorry to all the fans of the book. I read the first one at the insistance of my best friend and I was flabergasted at how EL James managed to make Annastasia stupider and more dependant on Christian then Bella was with Edward. I honestly didn’t think that was possible.

  10. lovelylaura says:

    Maybe the director is (misguidedly) trying to show her emotional growth in the film by dressing her dowdy in the beginning?

    I’ve never read the books, but I might go and see this for the pure spectacle! And I do love me some Marcia Gay Harden. 🙂

  11. Hannah says:

    I just noticed that I haven’t seen any on-set pics of Sam Taylor-Johnson, yet.

  12. Carla says:

    After seeing the pilot for that awfull Trophy Wife, I though MArcia had really bad money problems. And now this. Please, don’t let it be cause she can get better roles than this crap.

    • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

      You actually watched the whole thing? I only watch the first five minutes (turned it off after the part where Malin Ackerman goes to the emergency room and runs into all three ex wives and kids).

  13. TheCountess says:

    Fans of the book are getting exactly the celluloid crapfest they deserve.

    (Except for Marcia Gay Harden. I hope she’s getting paid a lot, and that’s why the wardrobe budget is so, well, budget.)

  14. lunchcoma says:

    It’s hard to tell, because the poor writing and non-existent editing means there’s little distance between the characters and the author in this book. The dialogue is an English woman’s idea of how people in Seattle might talk, the sex is a vanilla person’s fantasy of what kink looks like, and the clothes are a 50-year-old’s guess at what college students and young executives might wear (I’m pretty sure I remember Christian wearing stonewashed jeans).

    Dakota looks like a much younger version of E.L. James in these pictures, which is about as faithful to the book as I think it’s possible to get.

    • RJ says:

      haha-a young EL James. Now that makes sense. because she certainly is an old looking Anastasia (not exactly innocent and fresh-faced). Shailene Woodley from The Descendants would have been a better choice, but I think she’s too good of an actress to get sucked into this mess.

  15. Baskingshark says:

    Rita Ora, widely praised for her 5-second breakout role as “Racer” in The Fast and The Furious 6, has also joined the cast, taking the talent level down another ten notches in the process.

    • Dani2 says:

      Lol widely praised by who? Her family members?

      I dunno man, I know a lot of people will see this movie (even those who hate it) but I just know it will be cringe-worthy. There’s no way that it won’t be.

  16. Sloane Wyatt says:

    Dakota Johnson looks like she’s channeling Jodi Arias’ bangs and ponytail! –

  17. gg says:

    She looks like a schoolkid – is this the way the book is written?? Child pr0n?

    • lunchcoma says:

      It’s not supposed to be, but it’s filled with references to being childlike. I didn’t notice them until a recapper pointed them out, but they’re incredibly creepy.

  18. yeahright says:

    Of course its accurate. The book appeals to the thousands of women out there who think they can look like a slob and gain the undying love of a sexy, handsome, filthy rich man.

  19. Devon says:

    I’ve seen other photos where Dakota is wearing black pumps. The Uggs are probably for a lighting shot or a rehearsal.

    • RJ says:

      James Dorner isn’t that tall, in the book CG is very tall They probably want Dakota to appear as short as possible in the kissing scenes, hence the Uggs. It’s the Tom Cruise school of cinematography.

      • RJ says:

        Correction-Jamie Dornan. I just googled name James Dorner and got Doakes from Dexter (doh!). Jamie is supposedly 5’10” (subtract 1-2 inches from that for actual height)

  20. insomniac says:

    Granted I’ve only read Jenny Trout’s hilarious sporking of the books, but I kind of thought Ana was supposed to look immature and budget, at least in the beginning.

  21. lady mary. says:

    i just realized Dakota johnson was that Stanford girl that sleeps with sean parker in Social network ,she had a nice ass ,and a sweet voice and awful acting ,

    • mia girl says:

      Funny enough, this weekend I just realized that Dakota played Jason Segel’s young, rebound girlfriend in The 5 Year Engagement. I actually thought she had a bit of a scene steal in that movie. And she’s definitely attractive.

  22. LahdidahBaby says:

    I think the frumpy, clueless style would create an edgy sort of energy as the worldly Christian begins to assert himself on her in various ways, sexual and otherwise, IF Dakotah Johnson were delicately lovely and had extraordinary acting chops, but she’s rather ordinary looking and has no extensive acting experience as far as I know. But yes, the books were outrageously badly written (too bad, because the plotline itself was really great), and if the film follows the author’s standards, it will suck. On the other hand, if the acting and directing are good, the storyline may carry the day and the film could be amazing. It’s just difficult to comprehend the casting. But maybe the mix will surprise me.

  23. Mmmmm says:

    basically she looks more and more like the author herself (younger of course)
    E.L. James , and when i look to her i can’t see sweet or sexy

  24. TheOriginalWaffle says:

    So why would we bother to judge this movie as if it were trying to be Oscar bait?

    We SHOULD be judging it in terms of fantasy, identification, and wish fulfillment. Does it look like the movie is promoting wish fulfillment? Looks like it is. SUCCESS.

  25. korny says:

    this whole ’50 shades’ thing is budget and immature, so what would you expect..

  26. MissNostalgia says:

    I’ll go with budget; but I do love her boots in the header photo……I cannot resist moto/biker boots.

  27. Aly says:

    This movie is gonna be AWFUL. I can’t wait to not watch it but read other people who have make fun of it lmao

  28. Dana m says:

    Who is playing the role of Kate? I pictured Annalynn McCord when I read the books.

  29. Virgilia Coriolanus says:

    All this post does to me is remind me that I need to watch ‘Secretary’ again. ‘Secretary’ was the very first r rated movie (for sexual content) that I had ever seen–at 15. So my eyes were definitely like 0_0….obviously I wasn’t a sheltered little delicate flower, but I had no idea what BDSM was up until that point.

    We should just discuss ‘Secretary’ (or how hot James Spader was, either way, I’m not picky), instead of these stupid books.

    • loveisthecoal says:

      You just made my day. Usually when I mention how hot James Spader is, people look at me like I’m deranged. It’s good to know I’m not alone. 😀 LOVE Secretary!!

      PS: have you been watching The Blacklist? It’s a bit of a mess, but James makes it worth watching!

      • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

        I LOVE the Blacklist–I’m not entirely sure that the woman who plays as Elizabeth Keen can act–but I ship them HARD (mainly because I need to seen him getting dirty with someone in this series). I was so sad when they killed Luli off.

        The last two episodes–Anslo Garrick–was great.

      • JWQ says:

        They look at me the same way when I say that! I have always thought he has the looks of someone who is incredibly kinky and dirty in bed, and in a good way, but yes… I agree as well!

    • Illyra says:

      I wasn’t crazy about Secretary, but James Spader was hot as hell in it. Love him.

      • Sojourner says:

        He’s hot as hell in Blacklist, too. The weight gain, aging, shaved head, stupid hat, Tom Clancy glasses … have done nothing to diminish his innate hotness for me, once I got used to them.

        I actually can’t watch Secretary b/c the self-harm at the beginning makes me feel light-headed, every time. Self-harm and BDSM are major triggers for me to faint and yet, knowing this, I’ve tried 3 times to watch Secretary, and will probably try again, b/c I want to see James Spader in it so bad.

      • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

        I agree Sojourner–he’s gained weight, lost some hair, got older–but talent and charm doesn’t go away with any of that. He’s the kind of guy I would fall for in an instant. But I do think he’s losing weight–he’s been looking a little thinner in the later episodes, compared to the first episode. But God–I’d hit it in his three piece suit.

        And ‘Secretary’ isn’t that bad in terms of graphic scenes–there’s a scene where she burns herself w/a hot kettle, she tries to cut herself twice and is interrupted both times, James spanks her–other than that, nothing much.

    • Elle says:

      One of my favourite romances. I love, love, LOVE that movie.

  30. Steph says:

    I actually imagine they want her to look like that because in the book when she first meets Christian, she is still in school and working.
    But, I do agree that her face is not flattering in those pics.

  31. Lee says:

    I pictured Anastasia dressing like Andy Sachs (Devil Wears Prada) – pre-makeover. Basically: like she went dumpster diving in Walmart castoffs.

    To be fair: if Anastasia is supposed to be graduating college then Ugg boots are spot on. Yes, they’re ridiculous looking, but college girls across the US break them out of the second it dips below 60 degrees. I’m surprised she isn’t wearing PINK yoga pants with them and carrying a Starbucks drink.

    I know it’s been said before but couldn’t they have picked an actress who actually LOOKS 22? Dakota is what 24 or 25? But she looks closer to early 30’s. Suspension of belief will be strong in this movie.

    That being said: I won’t see this in theaters, but I will hate-watch it when it comes out on DVD.

  32. Dani says:

    Dakota isn’t an ugly girl IRL but they definitely make her look so unattractive and worn. I pictured someone like Shailene Woodly because she actually has a young fresh face. I think E.L James just wanted to write a story of how she wished her life would go, and she ended up with 50 Shades.

  33. femputer says:

    it seems to be really cold where they’re filming. she’s probably wearing the uggs for warmth and most likely won’t be filmed from the knees down. but yeah, anastasia in the book is a total frump.

  34. hannah says:

    the entire movie is immature and budget. You can put all the gold in the world over shit and it’s still just shit underneath.

  35. St says:

    I disagree. Isn’t this the whole point? That Bella/Anastasia is such ordinary shy girl, the one that other guys don’t pay attention too much at . And then Mister Perfect, with perfect body and amazingly pretty face falls in love with her so deeply that he can’t live without her? I think Dakota’s style is fine. This is how she suppose to be.

    If they will put her in designers expensive cloth that she will look super hot in – then they will miss the whole point of all that fantasy of ordinary women. It’s like whole point that they put themselves at Bella/Anastasia place.

    I think they made good choice with Dakota. She has that kind of face. Sometimes she looks way too pretty to be ordinary Anastasia. On other angle she doesn’t look too pretty and looks rather ordinary. I wonder how she looks in motion. Because you know that Cumberbatch and Hiddlestone don’t look too pretty in pictures but look very hot in motion.

    I also wonder about Jamie. He looks so hot in motion with beard. But I never saw him clean shaved. Will he be as hot?

    • Ange says:

      Actually in the books every guy within a 50 mile radius slips over in his own drool when Ana is around…. because she’s so smart and funny and awesome….. despite not doing one smart, funny or awesome thing in the whole series.

  36. threechordme says:

    I don’t even know where a woman today would go to buy that floral blouse! Walmart is cooler than that, man. BUT- Jamie Dornan’s grip on her elbow in the third photo? So sexy. I will see this train wreck for him. Hopefully season 2 of The Fall will save his career after this.

  37. Lark says:

    I love Lainey’s snark about this, in that the “bangs” on movie Anastasia are because they are trying to make an enhanced, fictional version of EL James. Dakota was so cute on Ben and Kate, and I think it sucks that she is doing this because the amount of hate for this series is going to spill over onto her as an actress imo.