Fifty Shades of Grey movie: Sam Taylor-Johnson will not return to direct franchise

The director previously said it had been 'difficult' working with EL James

Daisy Wyatt
Thursday 26 March 2015 10:18
Fifty Shades of Grey director Sam Taylor Johnson
Fifty Shades of Grey director Sam Taylor Johnson

Sam Taylor-Johnson has confirmed she will not return to direct the next two Fifty Shades of Grey films.

“Directing Fifty Shades of Grey has been an intense and incredible journey for which I am hugely grateful,” said Taylor-Johnson.

“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.”

Taylor-Johnson has previously admitted it was “difficult” and “frustrating” working with Fifty Shades creator EL James on the film.

Sam Taylor-Johnson at the London premiere of Fifty Shades of Grey

She told the Hollywood Reporter: “It’s difficult. When you have an author and an auteur, it’s a difficult and challenging relationship. I’m not saying that at times it wasn’t helpful, but there were times when it was really, really frustrating.”

The director said James attended the set every day and the pair “would have proper on-set barneys”. She also disclosed that James had not contacted her or congratulated her during the promotional tour ahead of the film’s release.

Fifty Shades Darker, based on the second book in James’ best-selling erotic trilogy, is due to be released in 2017.

The final book, Fifty Shades Freed, which sees protagonists Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey wed, will be adapted for the big screen the following year in 2018.

Fifty Shades of Grey broke records to become the biggest 18-rated opening ever in the UK.

The film has made $558 million in total, breaking box office records in 11 countries in its opening Valentine’s Day weekend.

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