‘Fifty Shades’ Author Asks Husband to Write Screenplay to Film Sequel

The Fifty Shades of Grey franchise is becoming a family affair.

Niall Leonard, husband to the author of the Fifty Shades trilogy EL James, has signed on to write the script for the second installment of the film, sources told The Hollywood Reporter.

“Niall is an outstanding writer in his own right, with multiple established credits, and we are lucky to have him join Team Fifty,” said producer Michael De Luca.

Leonard is a British author and screenwriter. He’s responsible for writing several British television series as well as the Crusher book series.

He also assisted creatively on the first Fifty Shades, but was uncredited.

James, also known as Erika Leonard, has been known to maintain creative control when working with Universal’s adaptations of her trilogy.

James reportedly clashed with director Sam Taylor-Johnson on many levels during production of the first film.

“We’d often clash and have to find a way to work through that to get to some sort of resolution,” said Taylor-Johnson. “She would be the first to say as well that it was not easy. It was not easy. But we got there. I think both of us felt it was an incredibly painful process.”

Both Taylor-Johnson and screenwriter Kelly Marcel have chosen to walk away from the sequel to the wildly successful film, which earned $568.8 million worldwide.

The stars of the film, Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan, are negotiating their contracts for the sequel in which they will receive pay raises.

There is speculation that James wants to write the screenplay herself, but her husband may be better equipped for the job due to his screenwriting experience.

The new film has yet to sign on a director, or announce a release date, but the team hopes to start production in early 2016.


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