Ever since “Fifty Shades of Grey's” director Sam Taylor-Johnson decided not to return amid rumors of her differences with author E.L. James, there was no clarity on the fate of the movie's sequel. However, new media reports suggest that the sequel, “Fifty Shades Darker,” now has a new director.
According to Variety, director James Foley has been officially offered to fill in Taylor-Johnson's shoes. If all goes well, Universal will soon officially announce Foley's name as the new director for “Fifty Shades Darker.”
Foley's famous directing works include various television series and movies. He directed the Al Pacino and Alec Baldwin starrer 1992 drama film, “Glengarry Glen Ross.” He is also responsible for directing 12 episodes of Netflix's “House of Cards” television series and one episode of “Hannibal.”
Foley, 61, is known for his works in various dramas from the 80s and the 90s, including “After Dark, My Sweet,” “At Close Range” and “Fear.” He also won accolades for directing the 1996 crime thriller “The Chamber,” which starred Chris O'Donnell and Gene Hackman. In addition, his 1986 film “At Close Range,” was selected to be featured in the 36th Berlin International Film Festival.
The executives at Universal reportedly interviewed several directors over the past few months, but Foley has been the frontrunner for the director's job for the sequel. Actors Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson will reprise their lead roles of Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele in the movie.
“Fifty Shades Darker” will be produced by author E.L. James and Michael De Luca. Dana Brunetti James’ husband Niall Leonard is the scriptwriter.
“Fifty Shades Darker” is the adaptation of the second story in the trilogy by James. The plot will see Anastasia and Christian taking their relationship to the next level, as they both start living together.
The sequel will also introduce many new characters, including Christian's violent ex-submissive Leila Williams, his former lover Elena Lincoln and Anastasia boss Jack Hyde. Casting for these characters is yet to take place.
The production for the sequel is expected to kick off in the first quarter of 2016, while the film is scheduled for a Feb. 14, 2017 release.