The Fifty Shades of Grey rumors have picked up in earnest all of a sudden, after a period of relative inactivity when Sam Taylor-Johnson came aboard as director. With a release set for under a year from now, producers don't have a lot of time to keep entertaining every obsessive fan's wishlist for the two lead roles. With Charlie Hunnam rumored for the part of billionaire BDSM bad boy Christian Grey earlier today, another name has emerged for to play Anastasia Steele.
The Wrap reports that 21 Jump Street and The Social Network scene-stealer Dakota Johnson is a "serious contender", while others like Shailene Woodley and Alicia Vikander have taken their names out of the running. For such a high-profile adaptation it's a little surprising that there hasn't been a greater demand to star in it, with most who have been attached dropping out before talks have even begun. Perhaps it has to do with the story, which has the sexually inexperienced Anastasia dominated by Christian, and finding it to be liberating and empowering or something like that. As beloved as the book is by women everywhere, hence the coining of the phrase "mommy porn", it's also been the subject of jokes and derision for its questionable message. Done wrong and the film could be a disaster that ruins careers. Or it could be an erotic Twilight for adults. Those are the risks.
Whether the film is any good or not, Johnson has the goods and is a definite star on the rise. The daughter of Don "Crockett" Johnson and Melanie Griffith (no stranger to erotic thrillers herself), she was great in the otherwise blah Five-Year Engagement, and was the only reason to watch Fox's short-lived sitcom Ben & Kate.
So what do you think? Charlie Hunnam and Dakota Johnson? Go ask your mom if that'll work for her. Fifty Shades of Grey is set to open next August.