Sam Taylor Johnson officially pulls out of directing ‘Fifty Shades Darker’

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This was big news yesterday, although I don’t really understand why. Still, beggars can’t be choosers when it comes to slow gossip days! Yesterday, Sam Taylor Johnson officially announced what we all knew last month: that she will not be directing the sequel to Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker. Her fights with EL James were just too intense, and Sam wants to move on to other projects. Plus, she’s already proven that she can play nice with a studio AND deliver a project on budget AND help make the film a hit. Sam told Deadline:

“Directing Fifty Shades Of Grey has been an intense and incredible journey for which I am hugely grateful. I have Universal to thank for that. I forged close and lasting relationships with the cast, producers and crew and most especially, with Dakota and Jamie. While I will not be returning to direct the sequels, I wish nothing but success to whosoever takes on the exciting challenges of films two and three.”

[From Deadline]

You know who I feel sorry for? Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan. Sam was on their side as actors. She wanted to make a good film that they could be proud of. She wanted their performances to elevate the material. With Sam gone, EL James is going to run the show and bully everyone into following her crappy “vision.” And it doesn’t sound like the producers are on Dakota and Jamie’s side either.

So, who will direct the sequel? Ten bucks says it’s just going to be some dude. They’ll go away from the female-oriented vision and the sequel will be sketchball.

Today with Jamie. #jamiedornan

A photo posted by Director FSOG (@samtaylorjohnson) on

Photos courtesy of WENN.

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25 Responses to “Sam Taylor Johnson officially pulls out of directing ‘Fifty Shades Darker’”

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  1. Dońt kill me i'm french says:

    If the producers were brave,they would take Paul Verhoeven.This guy makes female-oriented movies

  2. Izzy says:

    Unless they pull off a miracle for the second film, history will reflect STJ’s departure from the franchise as the moment it went from miraculously not bad to complete ruin. Seriously, is there no one in the studio who can rein in EL James? OTOH, this trainwreck should be interesting to watch.

    • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

      I know! I never thought this pos would provide any entertainment value, but in it’s way, it has. Lol @miraculously not bad

  3. Kiddo says:

    So much innuendo in that headline, or is it just me?

  4. Amy says:

    The lesson from this?

    Always read the source material and know who you’re working with.

    If you can’t figure out the size of the ego on someone who makes fan fiction off of fan fiction and runs off with the money then I’m going to have to take your adult card. There were no secrets or surprises for anyone involved in this. Same with the two actors. Maybe you won’t be in the “BIG MOVIE OF THE YEAR!!” and have your face on posters everywhere but its always better in the long-run to choose self-respect over paycheck.

    It’s telling to me even with the film’s ‘success’ everyone previously associated with it still aren’t sad they turned it down.

    • Cee says:

      Which is why Charlie Hunnam walked away as soon as he could. Going by what he’s said in past interviews, he always chooses material over paycheck in order to build a LT carreer.

    • Bridget says:

      I think the lesson should be: never give the author that much power, especially when it’s obvious they have no taste.

      • Esmom says:

        Yes. Or better yet don’t even offer them a movie deal in the first place and let their crappy books fade into obscurity.

      • Kimberly says:

        @ Esmom…………LOL, I couldn’t have said it better myself.

  5. Patty says:

    The pic of Sam and Jamie is adorable. Jamie and Dakota must really dislike each other. He manages to look comfortable and have chemistry with everyone except Dakota. I don’t get it. And the sequels are going to be a hot mess.

  6. Paige says:

    I really see this as normal. It has happened with other franchises. They have done it before and have gotten a second director for the sequel. STJ did not want the drama that came with the author, but I think it was more of Universal letting her go than her quitting. It was really up to Universal to decide if they wanted to keep her or not. STJ even said so herself. The two leads are under contract to do two more films, but they weren’t under contract to do two more films with STJ.

  7. Tiffany says:

    And somewhere EL James is sitting around thinking she is a winner.

  8. EN says:

    Thank you, heaven and earth and everything in between. I hope they cancel this monstrosity now.

  9. Esmom says:

    I love how in her statement she refers fondly to pretty much everyone involved except EL James. As I said above, I wish she’d never even been given a film platform for her drivel. Kudos to Sam for walking away gracefully.

  10. Micki says:

    All friends of mine that have seen the film (mums-apparently the expected demographic) said it is a boring as watching paint dry.
    I wonder if STJ would have made such hit if the success wasn’t pre-programmed from the book sales.
    With or without her I don’t think a second film can keep the foreplay on “coyness”, so …may be it’s for the best she left.

  11. Mario says:

    It won’t be long before her gold digging man slut of a husband pulls out of her as soon as his career takes off and he can find someone his own age.