‘Fifty Shades of Grey’: Emma Watson is Not Playing Anastasia Steele [Updated]

Published 2 years ago by , Updated March 18th, 2013 at 8:21 am,

emma watson fifty shades grey Fifty Shades of Grey: Emma Watson is Not Playing Anastasia Steele [Updated]

The Fifty Shades of Grey book trilogy’s success is fascinating, in terms of how it (quite literally) originated as erotic Twilight fan-fiction. That is, before author E.L. James tweaked the narrative and character elements and published it as a work of sexploitation for adult readers (as opposed to Stepheneie Meyer’s soapy coming of age/supernatural romance source material for tweens).

Universal Pictures scooped up the movie rights last year – carefully dancing around the sexually explicit subject matter within its official confirmation - and was quick to hire screenwriter Kelly Marcel to adapt the book, but has since announced nothing save for chairman Adam Fogelson saying it could be arriving in theaters as soon as Summer 2014. No surprise, the absence of information has fed rumors about who’s playing the female lead, Anastasia Steele.

Harry Potter alum Emma Watson is current a heavily-rumored candidate for that role (emphasis on RUMORED), thanks to documents listing her as “attached” to the project. The leak resulted from hackers breaking into the internal server for the German studio Constantin Films, prompting Universal to issue an official statement (via USA Today) that “No one has been cast yet.” So, yeah, we can lay this rumor to rest for the time being.

UPDATE: See For Yourself.

… Then again, since we’re talking about it: would it even make sense for Watson to accept a role like this? And can a Fifty Shades of Grey movie be anything but a bad joke taken way too far?

Perks of Being A Wallflower Logan Lerman Emma Watson Fifty Shades of Grey: Emma Watson is Not Playing Anastasia Steele [Updated]

Logan Lerman and Emma Watson in ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower’

Marcel is not a “name” screenwriter right now, but she is the creator of the defunct sci-fi television series Terra Nova and scripted Disney’s forthcoming Saving Mr. Banks (which may become an awards contender when it opens in December). She has also made it known that her Fifty Shades of Grey script is not going to be just some artistically-bankrupt and trashy romance cash grab, saying:

“Regardless of what you may think of [James'] writing, this is a modern love story, involving two complex characters, and that’s what I’m interested in. You have to work at it and talk about s— and figure it out, regardless of what that s— may be. I don’t care what anybody says, there is something about Christian [Grey] that is old-fashioned and romantic.”

Watson is transitioning into the adult stage of her career, following her turn in last year’s bittersweet-nostalgic high school look-back The Perks of Being a Wallflower with roles in the apocalyptic raunch-com This Is the End and Oscar-winner Sofia Coppola’s crime-drama The Bling Ring (as well as Darren Aronofsky’s Noah in 2014). Point being, if she were to decide that Marcel’s Fifty Shades script truly is a worthwhile love story for grown-ups – and a respectable director were to sign on and lend the whole project more credibility – then the prospect of Watson agreeing to play Miss Steele wouldn’t be so mind-boggling – dare we say, it might even be somewhat appropriate (given her other post-HP role selections to date)?

How about it, then – can you fathom someone with acting cred like Watson signing on for Fifty Shades of Grey? Could the movie prove to be this generation’s Basic Instinct – or just the new Showgirls? Let us know what you think in the comments section (and please, keep it civil).


Source: USA Today

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  1. I read a while back that she wanted this roll to prove to everyone how grown up and mature she was. Whether this is something she said or not I see this out of so many female actors and entertainers these days. Why do they think taking off their clothes makes them more mature?

    • Because it does.

  2. Yeah no thanks, Emma has taken a huge stride with Wallflower and she looks like she’s only going to capitalize on that with Bling Ring and Noah, hell she might make us laugh in This is the End. I feel like this movie, no matter what the screenwriter says (she’s being paid by Universal/Comcast on the tails of the twilight movies of course she’s going to talk it up) this movie will be nothing more than a blown out of proportion love story catered to a specific demographic, rather than an awards front-runner. So Emma, you have so much talent and potential, you can do better.

    • What huge stride? She’s playing the same role in every movie so far. Even the movies she’s rumored to be cast in, have her playing the same character. It’s quite sad.

      • what do you mean the same role? are you stupid or something

  3. I feel both role should go to more unknown actors.

  4. Funny… Because yesterday she tweeted this: “Who here actually thinks I would do 50 Shades of Grey as a movie? Like really. For real. In real life.”

    • Thank you. These people writing these articles can’t even bother to check someone’s TWITTER for information? Hacks. As if someone with any sense of dignity would touch this crapfest.

      • Yeah, I agree, I can’t believe the hack who wrote this article about how Emma Watson has NOT been cast in Fifty Shades of Grey doesn’t acknowledge that she has NOT been cast in the movie.

      • obi, THANK YOU! i don’t give an s what this screen writer says, this is a smut fest and a trashy excuse for a book. i don’t think Emma would take on a role like this because she has too much class and could do so much better than that!

  5. I heard that she really isn’t doing this movie. It was just a rumor that was put to rest. I would hope she would never play a role like that.

  6. As lovely and adorable as she is, she really can ONLY be cast as a self-indulged teen with first world problems. That’s literally the only role she’s felt secure enough to take i.e. She can’t act.

    • I don’t think she can act either but you never know, she may get better over time. Acting is challenging bro.

    • We live in the first world… What other problems would we have. That term has run its course. Now people use it to describe things in no relation to the topic at hand. You should only be aloud to use that if you actually live in a 3rd world country. . . Anyway. To the book. Isnt there fisting in it or somethin? Doesnt seem like a book worth making a film anyway.

    • she can’t act? have you not seen the Harry Potter movies??? keep telling yourself that………

  7. She’s already blown-up her own twitter account saying she is NOT doing this flick. So why on earth is still fodder?

  8. ummmmmmmm no. She tweeted that there was no way she was doing this…

  9. I just saw this on my facebook feed, right below this article:


    It basically says Emma Watson won’t be playing Anastasia Steele.

  10. I don’t think I can watch this movie if Emma Watson is cast, then again I don’t think I want to watch this movie at all…

  11. NO! No! Just NO! There are better ana’s PLEASE