CNBC’s Squawk Box spoke with Dana Brunetti and Michael De Luca, co-producers of the upcoming movie adaptations of E L James’s best-selling Fifty Shades trilogy, on yesterday morning’s program.
When co-host Andrew Ross Sorkin asked the team if the erotic book would need to be R-rated, De Luca had this to say:
“That’s correct. The challenge is similar to adapting from any medium. We’re going to treat this like adapting from Ben’s [Mezrich] books or any books or adapting from a play or comic book or magazine article. Anything that’s not film, you get into a process of adaptation, and we’re just going to kind of bring the same criteria to the adaptation of this. Obviously with this, when you’re dealing with something that’s found such incredible mainstream success, you want to preserve everything that’s wonderful about it. The success of this has certainly been breathtaking, and we’re going to honor that in our quest for the perfect adaptation.”
But perhaps the most promising part of the interview came when co-host Joe Kernen asked the following:
“When I think about it, what I know about Fifty Shades of Grey is the b&d and s&m stuff, so I don’t know anything about the plot…. Can you do it in an R-rated fashion…and the plot is good enough to where you don’t have to do porn to make people want to see it?”
To which De Luca replied:
“You should definitely read the book. It’s a beautiful, earnest love story. It’s a ‘first love’ love story. A young love story. And that’s the kind of engine that drives the whole enterprise. It’s really about the arc of a relationship, and that I think will be easy to preserve and must be preserved in any compelling film adaptation.”
We keep saying that we have faith in E L James doing what’s best for her story, her characters, and her fans, especially since she fought to have a voice in the collaboration process. This interview goes a long way in confirming that our faith is not misplaced. It’s easy to see that Brunetti and De Luca “get it.” We’re confident that everyone involved is working hard to find the right screenwriter and director to breathe life into the characters we’ve all come to know and love on the written page.
To watch the video of the interview, go here.
@Dana Brunetti, @Michael De_Luca, @SquawkCNBC