A fun rumor went around Hollywood this past weekend: Angelina Jolie, people were saying, had been approached to direct the movie version of the steamy romance novel Fifty Shades of Grey.
THR checked out the chatter last weekend and sources said there may have been an informal conversation but that nothing was real, and reps for the actress-turned-filmmaker say there haven't been any talks with studio Focus Features (Focus also denied the rumor). Still, bloggers are now starting to catch wind of the rumor and of course, in Hollywood, there's always the possibility that Jolie will come aboard.
It would make some sense. Jolie, who made her directorial debut in 2011 with the well-reviewed war drama In the Land of Blood and Honey, and Focus is likely looking for a strong female voice to pair with the material. Regardless, Focus and sister company Universal Pictures are still trying to find the right filmmaker to pair with the racy, somewhat controversial book by EL James. Those efforts are ongoing.
Shades has become a publishing phenomenon, recently hitting 10 million in sales. Universal and Focus paid $5 million for movie rights in a bidding war earlier this year.
At the same time, casting rumors have circulated online, with everyone from Amanda Seyfried to Kristen Stewart being floated as possible actresses to play Anastasia Steele, the young woman who becomes involved in an explicit relationship with billionaire businessman Christian Grey.