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Director Sam Taylor-Johnson bows out of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ sequels

“Fifty Shades of Grey” director Sam Taylor-Johnson, middle, has bowed out of the sequels.
“Fifty Shades of Grey” director Sam Taylor-Johnson, middle, has bowed out of the sequels. Universal Pictures

After well-publicized differences with the author of “Fifty Shades of Grey,” director Sam Taylor-Johnson has bowed out of the movie’s sequels.

“Directing ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ has been an intense and incredible journey for which I am hugely grateful,” Taylor-Johnson said in a statement issued on Wednesday.

“I have Universal to thank for that. I forged close and lasting relationships with the cast, producers and crew and most especially, with Dakota (Johnson) and Jamie (Dornan). While I will not be returning to direct the sequels, I wish nothing but success to whosoever takes on the exciting challenges of films two and three.”

The news comes as no surprise to anyone who has followed the making of the movie. Taylor-Johnson publicly admitted to having differences with “Fifty Shades” author E.L. James.

And during the making of the movie in January 2014, one source told E! News that “Sam is getting annoyed about the way the script is being handled. E.L. James wants the movie to match the book exactly, but Sam has a different perspective. Sam is reminding E.L. she writes books and she makes movies. This has caused some tension between the two of them.”

Deadline reports that there’s no news on a possible replacement for Taylor-Johnson. Dornan will return as billionaire Christian Grey and Johnson will be back as Anastasia Steele.

The movie has earned more than $550 million at worldwide box offices.

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