I've been pretty happily ignoring Universal's adaptation of the Twilight fanfic-cum-S&M sensation Fifty Shades of Grey, at least beyond wondering how a major studio was going to release a movie as filthy as this one should be. This isn't one of those sites where we talk about every single trade break in Variety, so I figured I'd be able to simply let the movie pass us by.
And then this: Variety is reporting that Universal/Focus Features is heavily courting Joe Wright, a very fine director whose involvement would make FIfty Shades a movie worthy of attention. Goddammit!
This is a surprise. Is it because Wright's excellent Anna Karenina didn't do so hot? Probably not, as Fifty Shades is at the same studio, and they realize this is a potential blockbuster. They're going with Wright because they know him, they like him and they know he works well with women. What's interesting is that a Wright-directed Fifty Shades is much classier than it might be under many other directors.
If Wright comes on board does he bring Saoirse Ronan into the film? They've worked together a couple of times, and Twitter tells me she's the right age. I don't know how I feel about her being in a sexually explicit movie - I met the girl on the set of City of Ember when she was about 14. It's hard to shake that image of her.
There's no deal in place, but Variety thinks Wright is the guy. Which would mean I actually see this damn thing in theaters.