Venice Film Festival is now in full swing, and Hollywood’s finest have been pouring onto the Italian streets to promote their latest releases. One actress in particular that has been riding the crest of her newfound stardom is Dakota Johnson, who was in town to trumpet her appearances in A Bigger Splash and Scott Cooper’s gangster drama Black Mass.
But arguably the biggest release – or rather releases – on the actress’ slate involve a certain Anastasia Steele. Due to reprise her role as the reticent, shy assistant next year for Fifty Shades Darker, Johnson will be teaming up with a new director this time around following the exit of Sam Taylor-Johnson. In her place is Confidence‘s James Foley, who recently sealed a deal to helm the erotic sequel. And now, the actress has offered her own two cents on the director’s new take on E.L. James’ novel of the same name.
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Speaking to Empire while at the film festival, here’s what Johnson had to say about the “exciting” prospect of partnering with a different director for her second outing as Anastasia.
“It’s quite exciting,” she says. “There was a moment of being afraid, because I didn’t know what it was going to be like. I had an experience with Sam [Taylor-Johnson] and then that all went away. Now I’m excited. I think James is a talented filmmaker. How often do you get to reconvene with the same people and have a different spin?”
Does this mean that Fifty Shades Darker will act as a radical departure from the source material? Not likely, but Johnson does seem to hint at a different tone and style with the sequel. Asked whether she has met with Foley and if his vision differs from Taylor-Johnson, the actress replied “I have. You’ll just have to see when the movie comes out…”
Penned by Niall Leonard, Fifty Shades Darker will slink into theaters on February 10, 2017. Before Fifty Shades Freed will continue the franchise’s love affair with the Valentine’s Day release corridor – and, you know, conclude the trilogy – on February 8, 2017.