It’s funny how what’s sure to be one of 2015’s highest-grossing movies would have been considered a suicidal project for any major studio just a few years ago. Advance tickets for Fifty Shades of Grey, adapted from the bestselling erotic novel, just went on sale last Sunday, but if you have any doubts about this movie being absolutely massive, consider this – it’s already the fastest selling R-rated movie in Fandango history.
The online ticketer reports that the BDSM romance has eclipsed previous record-holder Sex and the City 2 while also outpacing The Hangover Part II, The Hangover Part III and Gone Girl. In addition, it’s the fastest selling non-sequel film since The Hunger Games back in 2012. Basically, Fifty Shades is going to dominate (sorry) at the box office.
Universal must be relieved to hear that. Though it’s based on a runaway bestseller, the film also represents a step into riskier territory for the studio. We haven’t seen sexually charged, envelope-pushing titles do gangbusters at the box office since pics like Fatal Attraction and Basic Instinct in the ’80s and early ’90s. Fifty Shades of Grey, though, may well kick off a new trend.
Sam Taylor-Johnson directed the adaptation, which stars Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan. Fifty Shades of Grey hits theaters on February 13th, meaning that many moviegoers are primed to have a way kinkier Valentine’s Day weekend than usual.
When Anastasia “Ana” Steele, a literature student, goes to interview the wealthy Christian Grey, as a favor to her roommate Kate Kavanagh, she encounters a handsome, brilliant and intimidating man. The innocent and naive Ana, startled to realize she wants him, despite his enigmatic reserve and advice, finds herself desperate to get close to him. Not able to resist Ana’s beauty and independent spirit, Grey admits he wants her too, but in his own terms. Ana hesitates as she discovers the singular tastes of Grey – despite the embellishments of success – his multinational businesses, his vast wealth, his loving family – Grey is consumed by the need to control everything. As they get close, Steele starts to discover Grey’s secrets and explores her own desires.