EL James announced this week that she has written a spinoff to her ridiculously successful Fifty Shades Of Grey trilogy. The new Fifty Shades adventure is simply titled Grey and will retell the story of the original three books from billionaire Christian Grey’s point of view, providing insight into Grey’s mindset and love of Bruce Springsteen. (The original trilogy was told from the point of view of the droids.) Basically, James beat Hollywood to the punch by rebooting her own franchise.
Will Grey be adapted for the big screen, though? According to The Hollywood Reporter, it’s within Universal‘s rights to adapt Grey to film, given that it controls the characters of Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey. It’s highly unlikely that Universal would pass on adapting Fifty Shades Of Grey, Part IV: The Search For More Money, as the original film generated $570 million worldwide. And with Fifty Shades Darker slated for February 10, 2017 and Fifty Shades Freed set to be released February 9, 2018, Universal is engaging in true findom. (That’s “financial domination” for you vanillas.)
While audiences would presumably love to see more of Dakota Johnson as Ana and less of Jamie Dornan as Chris, their participation in a Grey spinoff is far from assured. Neither Johnson nor Dornan had any idea that James was writing the spinoff, and reps for both actors are looking for pay increases before they sign on for Fifty Shades Darker. Each of the stars made $250,000 plus box-office bonuses for the original film, and are looking to renegotiate once a director is in place. (Fifty Shades Of Grey director Sam Taylor-Johnson will not be returning amidst rumors of clashes with James.) This might even be an opportunity for Charlie Hunnam to take over the role of Grey and actually bring some charm to the proceedings.
With any luck, the Grey spinoff—which is set to be published on June 18—will lead to an entire series of Fifty Shades: Anthology films. Perhaps audiences will be treated to Christian Grey’s origin story with his Jedi master, Elena Lincoln, or perhaps a standalone adventure featuring his brother Elliot Grey and Kate Kavanagh called Laters, Baby. The possibilities are endless.