fifty shades freed

If there’s any proof that fan fiction has power, it’s the mystifying success of the Fifty Shades of Grey series. Its two leads have been launched into stardom (at least, Dakota Johnson kind of has), the movie soundtracks have jumped to the top of music charts, and there’s now a third and final film to close out this BDSM-tinged tale.

Not bad for a passably-written fan-fiction of the Twilight series.

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Fifty Shades Darker trailer

Fifty Shades of Grey ended with Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) reconsidering the terms of her complicated relationship with Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan), but to the surprise of absolutely no one, Fifty Shades Darker finds the couple slipping right back into their old kinky habits. After all, there’s no sequel if they break up for good. And if there’s no sequel, there’s no opportunity for Universal to make another gazillion dollars off this hot property.

However, there are a few key changes this time around. For starters, the new installment sees James Foley replacing Sam Taylor-Johnson as the director behind the camera. And then there’s the fact that this one looks less like a romantic drama than a thriller, what with all the creepy stalkers appearing in bedrooms and all the helicopters crashing in forests. Watch the Fifty Shades Darker trailer below.

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Fifty Shades Darker Trailer

Yesterday, Universal released a 20-second teaser for the Fifty Shades Darker trailer. Now, you can watch the full trailer, which features “Crazy in Love” performed by Miguel, fine supporting actors you hardly see any of, and plenty of more drama between Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) and Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan). It’s, for the most part, what’s expected for a trailer for the sequel to the hit 2015 film.

Below, watch the Fifty Shades Darker trailer.

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Fifty Shades Darker

Universal Pictures has tied up a director for the next two Fifty Shades movies. James Foley, who was offered the job of directing Fifty Shades Darker back in August, is now confirmed to shoot both that film and its sequel, Fifty Shades Freed. Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan will return as kinky lovers Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey. Get the latest on the Fifty Shades sequels after the jump.  Read More »

A (Partial) Defense of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’

50 Shades of Grey defense

Let’s get this out of the way: Fifty Shades of Grey* has some massively problematic aspects. Its pathologization of dominant sexual behavior is deeply hypocritical, considering that the movie delights in that exact same behavior. And it’s especially distasteful to portray Christian Grey’s taste for BDSM sex as unhealthy while glossing over his borderline abusive behavior outside of the bedroom, like his habit of showing up at Anastasia’s house uninvited or selling off her possessions without asking.

But to consequently dismiss Fifty Shades of Grey as “bad for women” (or men for that matter) does it and its fans a disservice. For all Fifty Shades of Grey gets wrong about adult relationships and BDSM, it still offers something rare and valuable: a portrait of female sexuality that’s entirely by, for, and about women.

(* To clarify, were talking exclusively about Fifty Shades of Grey the movie here. Fifty Shades of Grey the book is a whole different beast, and as I haven’t read it I can’t discuss it.) Read More »

‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ Sequels Are Coming

Fifty Shades of Grey

Fifty Shades of Grey soundss like a disaster in some respects, but it’s already looking like a success in a commercial sense. It’s already one of the fastest-selling R-rated advance tickets in history, and is on track to become one of the biggest Valentine’s Day openings in history. It’s even helped boost January movie ticket sales by 37% over last year.

And you know what that means: Sequels are coming. They’ll be based on the two other books from the Fifty Shades trilogy, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed. Just be glad we haven’t heard of plans to split the finale into two films. More on the Fifty Shades of Grey sequels after the jump.  Read More »

Gus Van Sant / Fifty Shades of Grey / Alex Pettyfer

It was around this time last year that Universal forked over $3 million or more to pick up the movie rights to Fifty Shades of Grey, author E.L. JamesTwilight fanfiction-turned-erotic bestseller. Despite the rumors that have been flying around since the beginning, though, the project still doesn’t have a director or stars attached. But apparently one guy who wants in is Gus Van Sant.

In a bid for the directing gig, Van Sant has shot a test reel of a steamy sex scene, with Magic Mike actor Alex Pettyfer playing kinky billionaire Christian Grey. This is by no means a confirmation that either of them will be involved in the final product. However, it may suggest that Van Sant is the kind of filmmaker Universal is looking for. Hit the jump to keep reading.

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Despite its humble origins as a bit of Twilight fanfiction, E.L. JamesFifty Shades of Grey is picking up some interesting talent on its road to the big screen. The Social Network producers Michael De Luca and Dana Brunetti signed on back in July, and have been looking for a writer to adapt the erotic novel ever since.

A shortlist revealed in August suggested an unexpected mix of names in the running, and as of today, Saving Mr. Banks writer and Terra Nova co-creator Kelly Marcel has emerged as the winner of the highly coveted gig. Sorry, Bret Easton Ellis. More after the jump.

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Plenty of high-profile actors and filmmakers have devoted time to deflecting Fifty Shades of Grey movie rumors in recent months, but one industry figure who’s made no secret of his burning desire to bring the S&M novel to life is Bret Easton Ellis. The American Psycho author has been pushing hard for the screenwriting job over the past couple of months, calling lead character Christian Grey “a writer’s dream” and floating casting ideas via Twitter.

Alas, it seems this particular dream is out of reach for Ellis. A shortlist of possible scribes for the Universal and Focus Features adaptation has just been revealed, and Ellis’ name is nowhere to be seen. What’s more surprising may be the writers that are. Producers are reportedly eyeing writers behind Cars 2, The Killing, and Saving Mr. Banks. More details after the jump.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

Angelina Jolie‘s people may be denying that the actress-turned-filmmaker has been in talks to direct the erotic romance Fifty Shades of Grey, but there’s one Hollywood figure who’s being totally upfront with his interest in getting involved. Bret Easton Ellis, author of American Psycho and The Rules of Attraction, has announced via Twitter that he is interested in writing the adaptation for the screen. And he already has a few ideas about who he’d like to see in the director’s chair and in front of the camera. More details after the jump.

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