Hearts aflutter over debut of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’
Anearly three-year wait had dwindled to mere days, and Liz Pulice grasped for words to capture the mood. “I don’t think anyone has been this giggly and excited since ‘Titanic,’ ” she said finally.
If you have to ask, don’t even bother. “Fifty Shades of Grey,” the movie based on the erotic trilogy that has sold more than 100 million copies worldwide, is now playing and Shades Nation is in a state.
“If you are not talking about it,” said Pulice, 31, of Waltham, “it’s just because you’re not admitting you’re dying to see it.”
The raunchy series has been panned by critics for lack of literary merit, but fans looking for things other than a well-turned phrase have bought so many tickets that “Fifty Shades” has become the fastest-selling R-rated movie. Several showings are already sold out.
The merchandising tie-ins have gone so far beyond the expected lingerie and related items that the faithful can buy everything from Fifty Shades wine to baby onesies (“9 months ago Mommy read 50 Shades of Grey”) to a Vermont Teddy Bear with “smoldering” grey eyes, a suit, and minihandcuffs.
Last week, director Sam Taylor-Johnson reportedly announced that there will be two sequels.
It’s hard to remember, but a few years ago, few people had heard of E.L. James, the former British TV executive who jumped off “Twilight” to write her own story, a kinky fan fiction tale about a billionaire CEO, Christian Grey, and Anastasia Steele, the virginal college student who falls for him.
What started as an underground phenomenon in 2011 exploded in 2012, when Vintage Books bought the English-language and audio rights, a move that was followed by a movie deal with Universal Pictures and Focus Features. The books have been translated into more than 50 languages.
And now, the film is about to hit theaters — after casting difficulties; tensions between author and director; the challenges of shooting an X-rated book with R-rated limitations; even a socialmedia campaign aimed at getting people to donate $50 to women’s shelters instead of seeing the movie.
Analysts expect the movie to do US$60 million at the box office opening weekend. Thanks to a last-minute deal, the movie will also play on 75 IMAX screens.
In preparation, fans are treating themselves to second, third, and fourth re-reads of the books. They are tweeting and pinning and Facebooking. They are gobbling up publicity that has managed to go beyond the movie to sweep in almost all of Hollywood.
“My boyfriend just sent me a confirmation e-mail with tickets for Valentine’s Day,” said Meghan Daly, 29, a publicist from Avon. “I don’t think he’s a willing participant, but he’s taking one for the team.”
( Taken from the Boston Globe).
Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan in a scene from
“Fifty Shades of Grey.”