As Universal prepares the next two installments in the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy, they seem to have settled – almost – on a director. Deadline has reported that James Foley, who has helmed Mark Wahlberg’s first starring role, Fear, as well as the breakout hit Glengarry Glen Ross, is the clear frontrunner to direct Fifty Shades Darker and possibly its third adaptation, Fifty Shades Freed.
Foley has come from a very successful run as a television director for Hannibal, House of Cards, and Wayward Pines. It is unclear whether the two sequels will be shot simultaneously or back to back, but along with Foley comes screenwriter Niall Leonard (E.L. James’ husband), Dakota Johnson as Anastasia Steele and Jamie Dornan as her mysterious love interest Christian Grey.
Sam Taylor-Johnson, the director of Fifty Shades of Grey, publicly stated she was not going to return to direct the sequels, citing an unpleasant working experience with author and producer E.L. James.
Fifty Shades Darker is set for a February 10, 2017.