Universal Pictures is sitting on one of the hottest properties in the country right now with the E.L. James erotic fiction novel Fifty Shades of Grey and its two sequels. Of course, the studio paid seven figures to sit on it, but don’t expect things to move slowly for much longer. In fact, the rumor mill is swirling already as Deadline has word that the studio wants Angelina Jolie to direct the adaptation.
Jolie made her directorial debut last year with the war drama In the Land of Blood and Honey, which was nominated for Best Foreign Language film at the 2012 Golden Globes and earned Jolie the Producers Guild of America’s Stanley Kramer Award for socially provocative filmmaking. She’s currently gearing up for production as the star of Disney’s Maleficent but there’s no time table yet for when Universal plans to make and release Fifty Shades of Grey, so this could work out.
If you haven’t at least off-handedly heard of the novel, you should probably considering relocating from whatever giant rock you’re under. It tells the story of a relationship between 22-year-old virgin named Anastasia Steele and manipulative billionaire Christian Grey. The two are drawn together, but Grey insists to a relationship on his terms, and his tastes include bondage, domination and S&M.
The novel has created a brouhaha amongst married women not seen since the sexual revolution. It has been dubbed on numerous occasions as “mommy porn.”
Another interesting fact is that the story initially began as a Twilight fan fiction featuring characters named Edward and Bella. The graphic nature of the stories led James to post them on her own website and they were later rewritten to become Fifty Shades of Grey, which was published in May 2011.
Jolie would certainly draw some more attention to the project, even only being behind the camera. Deadline says that James and her agent intend to first determine a writer and producer before making a decision about director.
As always, we’ll keep you posted.