Director Sam Taylor-Johnson Leaving Fifty Shades Franchise (If Only Everyone Else Would, Too)
"I cannot kill the beast from the inside. I have tried."
Citing regret over creating a monster (I’m assuming), director Sam Taylor-Johnson revealed to Deadline yesterday that she will not be directing another Fifty Shades movie.
The director explained,
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.
Personally, I’m of two minds about Taylor-Johnson’s decision–if her departure cast any doubt on the sequels I’d throw her a parade, but she and Deadline both seem confident that Universal will continue with the trilogy regardless. And if there’s a silver (that’s a degree to grey, right?) lining on this turd of a franchise, it’s that Fifty Shades‘ triumphant opening weekend at least showed the selling power a female creative team can have at the box office (obviously I’d prefer if that selling power hadn’t glorified domestic abuse, but considering the general state of women in film, I’ll take my victories where I can get ’em).
Considering much of the Fifty Shades phenomenon is a testimony to the power of internalized misogyny, I’m hesitant to say that having a male director at the helm next would necessarily make the trilogy even more irresponsible than it already is, but I certainly feel like it can’t help. If two more of these horrors will inevitably be leashed upon the world, is there a female director that you’d like to see running the show? Maybe someone who just needs a little exposure before she can move on to making films that don’t normalize domestic abuse?