Dakota Johnson knew exactly what she was getting herself into when she auditioned for the role of Anastasia Steele in Fifty Shades of Grey. The actress had read the popular book trilogy and fought hard to play the virginal college student who gets seduced by a sadomasochistic billionaire (Jamie Dornan).
“I just really understand it,” the 24-year-old actress says, “I think it’s an incredible love story and that’s why it’s affected so many people. Author E.L. James did a really good job of explaining how that just can happen sometimes and you have this chemical pull to someone. Adding in the sex makes it perfect, sometimes you feel a little bit naughty and that’s okay.”
For her audition, Johnson read a long, sexually explicit monologue from Ingmar Bergman’s 1996 film Persona. “They weren’t–and I can’t think of a better word right now–pussy footing around the subject,” the movie star says of selecting the racy material for her tryout.