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The sexy short film that helped 'Fifty Shades of Grey' director land the job

Director Sam Taylor-Johnson says it’s the love story at the center of Fifty Shades of Grey that drew her to the project. But for readers familiar with the sexually elicit trilogy, which begins filming in Vancouver next week, Fifty Shades of Grey is no traditional love story.

As it turns out Taylor-Johnson is no traditional director. For those of you unfamiliar with Taylor-Johnson, the 46-year-old mother of four daughters is a British visual artist and photographer who once posed with her ex-boyfriend, artist Henry Bond, in a re-creation of the famous naked John Lennon-Yoko Ono photograph. She won acclaim for her 2009 series of photos of famous Hollywood men crying. (The series, which featured portraits of Paul Newman, Robert Downey Jr., Ryan Gosling, and many others, can be seen here.) She’s also well-known for marrying Kick-Ass lead Aaron Taylor, who is 20 years her junior.

Taylor-Johnson spent years making music videos (R.E.M.) and short films, including one called Death Valley that featured a man masturbating in the desert. But it was the short film Love You More, which author E L James called “sweet and sexy and fun,” that became her calling card for landing the Fifty Shades job.
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'Fifty Shades of Grey' author E L James on the film: 'I'm terrified' -- EXCLUSIVE

Best-selling author E L James doesn’t give many interviews these days, but she agreed to sit down in Beverly Hills with EW last week, as part of our cover story on the film version of the first book in her trilogy, Fifty Shades of Grey, to discuss all that casting controversy, the intensity of her fans, the criticism of Christian Grey’s backstory, and her hopes for the film. She proved to be as direct and unfiltered as her books are, beginning with how she’s feeling about the new movie.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: The film adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey is about to start shooting in Vancouver. How are you feeling about it?
E L JAMES: I’m terrified. Completely. I’ve been terrified from the moment I published the book.  My mother was terrified of everything, and so am I. It’s a terrible way to grow up. You don’t expect this kind of success. Even now it floors me. My only ambition for the books was to see them in bookstores. This is huge. And there is this passionate fandom; we need to get this right for them.
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'Fifty Shades of Grey': Charlie Hunnam, Dakota Johnson roped into latest casting rumors

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The guessing game of who will star in the adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey — the erotic novel by E L James that has sold over 70 million copies worldwide — continues!

The film, directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson, is slated to hit theaters in August of next year, but so far the only news we’ve gotten are the names of actors who aren’t going to appear in the movie. (For a list of all the actors who have denied rumors they’ll star in the film — from Emma Watson to Sam’s husband, Aaron Johnson-Taylor, please click here.) The latest names being bandied about for the roles of Anastasia “Ana” Steel and Christian Grey? Dakota Johnson and Charlie Hunnam.

Dakota, 23, is the daughter of Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith. She’s appeared in The Social Network (memorably with Justin Timberlake), 21 Jump Street, The Five-Year Engagement, and the Fox show Ben and Kate. Hunnam, 33,  most recently starred in this summer’s Pacific Rim, as well as Undeclared and Sons of Anarchy.

However, a source at Universal cautions that they aren’t close to making any casting offers at this time, which means the game is far from over. Fifty Shades of Grey is slated to hit theaters in August 2014.

'Fifty Shades of Grey' finds its director: Sam Taylor-Johnson

The Fifty Shades of Grey movie just took a big step closer to becoming a reality: Sam Taylor-Johnson has signed on to direct the much-talked-about adaptation of E L James’ best-selling book. Taylor-Johnson is best known for her directorial debut, 2009′s Nowhere Boy, which starred her husband, Kick-Ass and Savages actor Aaron Johnson.

“I am excited to be charged with the evolution of Fifty Shades of Grey from page to screen,” Taylor-Johnson said in a statement announcing her involvement. “For the legions of fans, I want to say that I will honor the power of Erika’s book and the characters of Christian and Anastasia. They are under my skin too.”
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