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  • Writer's pictureClaudio Fibonacci

Dakota Johnson’s Candid Take on the Making of Fifty Shades of Grey Films

Dakota Johnson’s Thoughts on E.L. James and Fifty Shades of Grey Movies

Dakota Johnson’s Thoughts on E.L. James and Fifty Shades of Grey Movies


Actress Dakota Johnson recently shared her thoughts on working with author E.L. James on the film adaptations of Fifty Shades of Grey. In a candid interview with Bustle, Johnson expressed her feelings about James’s level of involvement in the movie-making process compared to other authors.

Comparing Approaches

Johnson contrasted James’s hands-on approach with the more laid-back attitude of other authors like Maggie Gyllenhaal, who directed The Lost Daughter. According to Johnson, Gyllenhaal absorbed the novel and brought her own vision to the screen, which was well-received by the author. In contrast, James was described as “extremely precious” about every detail, from the dialogue to the wardrobe choices in the Fifty Shades movies.

Challenges Faced

Describing her experience working on the Fifty Shades films, Johnson revealed that the strict adherence to James’s vision made it challenging for the cast and crew to infuse the scenes with authenticity and spontaneity. Johnson noted that the constraints imposed by James left little room for creativity and exploration, resulting in a somewhat “contrived” atmosphere on set.

Previous Comments

This isn’t the first time Johnson has spoken out about her experience working with James. In a 2022 interview with Vanity Fair, she referred to the filming process as “psychotic,” highlighting the constant battle between James’s creative control and the practical challenges of adapting the book for the screen.

Advice to Authors

Reflecting on her experiences, Johnson offered a piece of advice to authors who are protective of their work: if you are adamant about maintaining the integrity of your story, perhaps consider making your own movie rather than allowing someone else to adapt it. This way, you can ensure that your vision is faithfully translated to the screen without compromise.

It’s clear that Dakota Johnson’s collaboration with E.L. James on the Fifty Shades of Grey movies was not without its challenges. Her insights shed light on the complexities of adapting a beloved book for the big screen and the delicate balance between staying true to the source material and allowing for creative interpretation.

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