In the wake of Fifty Shades of Grey‘s major box-office success, director Sam Taylor-Johnson has surprisingly announced she won’t be returning to direct subsequent films in the popular movie franchise.
“Directing ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ has been an intense and incredible journey for which I am hugely grateful,” the 48-year-old said in an official statement obtained by ‘People.’
Sam on set with Dakota and
“I forged close and lasting relationships with the cast, producers and crew and most especially, with Dakota [Johnson] and Jamie [Dornan]. While I will not be returning to direct the sequels, I wish nothing but success to whosoever takes on the exciting challenges of films two and three,” she said.
The flick — which hit theaters on Feb. 13 — is an adaptation of E.L. James’ bestselling erotic romance novel that tells the story of wealthy businessman Christian Grey (Jamie) and his relationship with a young college student named Anastasia Steele (Dakota).
Sam, Jamie, Dakota and E.L. at the movie’s premiere in February.
Prior to announcing her exit from the series, Sam expressed frustration over her tensions on the movie’s set with E.L.
“We definitely fought, but they were creative fights and we would resolve them,” she said of working with the 52-year-old author.
“We would have proper on-set [rows], and I’m not confrontational, but it was about finding a way between the two of us, satisfying her vision of what she’d written as well as my need to visualize this person on screen,” she told ‘Porter‘ magazine in their Spring 2015 issue.