Movies

Behind-the-Scenes Drama that Made Filming 50 Shades of Grey Unbearable for Dakota Johnson

Behind-the-Scenes Drama that Made Filming 50 Shades of Grey Unbearable for Dakota Johnson
Image credit: Universal Pictures

The main star said the shooting process was 'psychotic.'

When a book sells 40 million copies, outselling Harry Potter and Twilight, you can safely say the adaptation will be a hit even before it's released.

But while Fifty Shades of Grey was an undeniable financial success, the production of the movie series proved to be a real test for its stars, Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan.

Years after the release of the final film of the trilogy, Johnson revealed in an interview that the audience saw a completely different movie than what was originally planned:

'If I had known at the time that's what it was going to be like, I don't think anyone would've done it. It would've been like, "Oh, this is psychotic."'

As the actress explained, Charlie Hunnam, known to viewers from the TV series Sons of Anarchy and Guy Ritchie's The Gentlemen, was supposed to be her partner. But as the actor turned down the role due to scheduling conflicts and Jamie Dornan was hired to replace him, original book author E. L. James was furious.

Behind-the-Scenes Drama that Made Filming 50 Shades of Grey Unbearable for Dakota Johnson - image 1

Despite the fact that the actress did not like some of James' decisions, she was forced to keep quiet because her career was just beginning at the time of filming.

Johnson also admitted she had to shoot at least two takes of each scene: one take for what the author wanted to see, and the other to cover the original script, which James refused to use.

'She had a lot of creative control, all day, every day, and she just demanded that certain things happen. There were parts of the books that just wouldn't work in a movie, like the inner monologue, which was at times incredibly cheesy,' the actress continued.

Sam Taylor-Johnson, who brought her original feminine perspective to the story in the first part of the trilogy, refused to work with James after the first film was released. Instead, the author's husband Niall Leonard was hired to work on the scripts for the prequels. He eventually received the Golden Raspberry nomination for the Worst Screenplay.

Dakota Johnson was contractually bound to continue working on the film series. For herself, she decided that since she was interested in the subject, it made sense to finish it.

Behind-the-Scenes Drama that Made Filming 50 Shades of Grey Unbearable for Dakota Johnson - image 2

On top of that, the relationship between the two stars of the franchise was more than strained. While the characters of Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson were passionately in love according to the plot, the actors hardly got along in real life. They couldn't show any kind of chemistry on screen due to their mutual antipathy, and the love scenes had to be reshot several times.

Source: Vanity Fair