First there were rumors that Jamie Dornan was no longer interested in playing Christian Grey in Fifty Shades Darker, but this one isn’t a rumor.
Director Sam Taylor-Johnson, who led Fifty Shades of Grey, has decided to leave, according to The Huffington Post.
“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 [Johnson] and Jamie [Dornan]. 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’s statement said.
The 48-year-old has mentioned in the past that she and Fifty Shades author E.L. James often didn’t see eye-to-eye.
“There were tough times and revelatory times. There were sparring contests. It was definitely not an easy process, but that doesn’t mean to say that it didn’t come out the right way,” the director once said.
Taylor-Johnson isn’t the only member of the team moving to greener pastures.
Kelly Marcel, the film’s screenwriter, won’t be returning for the sequel either, leaving Universal to replace two vital team members before production.
E.L. James may be recruited to pen the next screenplay.
Fifty Shades of Grey, released in mid-February, generated $558 million worldwide.