The Northern Irish actor plays S&M-obsessed billionaire Christian Grey in the movie adaptation of EL James’ erotic novel, with Johnson starring as his submissive, Anastasia Steele.
But when it came to shooting the bondage sessions, Dornan was all too aware of how uncomfortable it was for Johnson.
“She’s the one who is very naked and tied up. As in the story, I’m the one who’s in control of it so [filming the sex scenes] was far harder for her,” he told The Independent.
Dornan took it upon himself to protect Johnson as soon as the cameras stopped rolling, in a bid to prevent her becoming “just a naked person tied to a bed”.
“It makes sense to be in the position she is between action and cut, but when they called cut, as the closest person to her I felt the need to throw a dressing gown over her, untie her, make sure everyone kept their distance for a while until she was comfortable,” he said.
“I’d be a pretty awful human being if I didn’t do that.”
The Red Room bondage scenes were shot in the final week of the shoot, when Dornan and Johnson had “built up a friendship and trust for each other”.
Neither actor was asked to do anything they refused to and “nothing horrific” was sprung upon them.
But then again, Dornan was au fait with the whole dominant thing by then, having visited a sex dungeon to research his role.
“It’s a very strange way to spend a Tuesday evening and I probably won’t have many like it,” he said. “I was sober, but they did give me a room temperature beer which I nursed through the experience. It was…an eye-opener.”
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