Universal’s Fifty Shades Of Grey adaptation has gone through the rumour mill quite a bit. Practically everyone who’s ever worked in the industry has at some point been attached. Now, The Wrap reports that Anna Karenina director Joe Wright is the frontrunner in Universal and Focus Pictures’ shortlist of suitable candidates. Also on the list are Gus Van Sant (Elephant, Last Days), Patty Jenkins (Monster) and Bennett Miller (Moneyball).
Apparently, two of the film’s producers, Michael De Luca and Dana Brunetti, are keen for Wright to take the gig. Focus have previously assumed distribution duties on four of Wright’s films, so having an established relationship with the director might sway things his way.
Wright’s name has been bandied about a whole host of projects recently too, including a remake of My Fair Lady. He’s brought out strong performances from leading ladies in recent years. His frequent collaborations with Keira Knightley in Atonement, Pride and Prejudice and Anna Karenina could point to the possibility of her taking the lead female role. Harry Potter‘s Emma Watson, soon to be seen in The Bling Ring, was also rumoured to be signing on. Then about a day later that rumour was quashed.
Van Sant recently shot a test video to garner Universal’s attention. The scene he chose (when lead Anastasia Steele gives up her womanliness to Christian Grey) certainly attracted a lot of web noise. With Magic Mike‘s Alex Pettyfer in the role of Grey, Van Sant’s test reel has so far elicited no response from the studio. It hasn’t been revealed if any other directors have shot similar footage.
The screenplay for the adaptation of E.L. James’ steamy bestseller has been penned by Kelly Marcel. Marcel’s writing resume so far includes the Mary Poppins-true-story, Saving Mr. Banks and TV series Terra Nova.
More news on Joe Wright’s role, and any other news on Fifty Shades Of Grey when it’s announced/a juicy rumour appears.