Sam Taylor-Johnson Rocks

Source: Red

(Not a fan of the FSOG books, haven’t seen the movie, but Sam Taylor-Johnson rocks.)

sam taylor johnson

Sam Taylor-Johnson: ‘Why I Made 50 Shades Of Grey The Movie’


…Whether you’ve read the books or not, Fifty Shades of Grey immediately became a more interesting film when it was announced that Taylor-Johnson was directing it. It was material that should always have been in the hands of a woman. And knowing Taylor-Johnson’s body of work, it makes total sense that she saw off Joe Wright, Steven Soderbergh and Gus Van Sant to secure directing the film version of the fastest-selling paperback of all time…

It’s okay until you think about your teenage daughter reading it, I suggest, thinking of Angelica, Taylor-Johnson’s 17-year old. You feel that, if taken seriously, the book could be interpreted as an exploration of female submission and victimisation. ‘Exactly,’ says Taylor-Johnson. ‘I felt like I had a responsibility to empower the lead character. Anastasia had to go on a journey of sexual exploration but, by the end, it had to be about empowerment. It is all her choice. All decisions, she’s clearly made. She is not falling prey…

…‘I want to protect my vision and that’s the hardest thing,’ she says. ‘There are so many voices. With any idea, 12 people have to approve it. And then you make it and 12 people want to adjust it. And you have to try and keep them all at bay. To keep your voice clear. To keep the shape of your art. You think, you hired me because I’m a creative artist with a vision. Don’t try and knock it out of me.’

Taylor-Johnson is nothing if not a fighter… Her mettle was most tested when, aged 30, weeks after giving birth to Angelica, she was diagnosed with colon cancer. Three years later, having fully recovered, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a mastectomy. She has said of this ‘drips by day, Prada by night’ hell (she has a great sense of humour) that she ‘took on cancer like I take on everything – a mission and a job to accomplish’. Her great friend Stella McCartney commented at the time, ‘She had so much thrown at her, and yet she still keeps her head above water with dignity.’…

…She met [her husband] at his audition for Nowhere Boy in 2008, having separated from Jopling after 11 years of marriage. They announced their engagement at the film’s premiere in October 2009 and married at Babington House in Somerset three years later – both taking each other’s names.

To the dissenters of their 23-year age gap, she says, ‘Tell them to fuck off. If you love someone, you love someone. It doesn’t matter; age, colour, c’mon!’…

…As Taylor-Johnson bounces up to take the dogs home and get back into her edit, she refuses to anticipate any achievement. ‘I have learnt more than I ever wanted to learn on this movie and that has been fantastic for arming me to make something the next time round. I really, honestly think it’s been truly, truly challenging.’ And with this you realise that as with any true artist, the journey, the learning is all in the process and not in the product. ‘Going through all the crap I’ve been through,’ she concludes, ‘I don’t really listen to other people’s opinions anyway; I just follow my heart and my instincts.’  And with that very real and honest admission, Taylor-Johnson walks away to get on with it.

(Read the full article at the source.)


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