The success of Fifty Shades of Grey and the hype surrounding its sequel, Fifty Shades Darker, has helped Dakota Johnson earn a rise to fame, but she now reveals that her success has also helped her to earn a reputation of another sort. Just as an interest in sexuality and BDSM lifestyles has drawn audiences to the Fifty Shades franchise, those fans and the media, in general, has come to confuse Dakota with her on-screen character, Anastasia Steele. While that may be flattering at times, it can also make Johnson feel quite uncomfortable during fan encounters.
Dakota Johnson Says She’s Often Misquoted To Come Off Sounding Like A “Sex Fiend”
E! News shares that Dakota opened up with Seth Meyers about her more disturbing fan encounters, when the Late Night host asked the Fifty Shades actress about the experiences she’s had in promoting the Fifty Shades films. The first encounter that came to mind was rather a cute story, which Dakota seemed pleased to share. A photo op with a young teen boy turned awkward for the boy’s mother, when her son told Johnson that the photo was really for her. The mom in question was so embarrassed that she had hidden her face in her hands.
Apparently, the woman was so starstruck by Ms. Johnson that she had sent her son “into the fire,” as the Fifty Shades Darker star phrased it.
Things got darker from there, as Dakota shared that she’s all too often misquoted sexually objectified in the media, though she admits that she does get flustered and her verbal stumbling only contributes to the problem.
“The other day I had someone ask me what my favorite sex toy was, which is like…inappropriate,” says the Fifty Shades Darker star. “I was like, ‘That’s an inappropriate question.’…I can’t answer in the right way. I said, ‘I don’t have one. Let’s move on.’ But then the headline was like: ‘She Doesn’t Have One Favorite Sex Toy.’ I can’t win! I either hate sex toys—so why am I doing this movie?—or I love them and I’m a sex fiend.”
Later, the Late Night host commented on the use of masks in the Fifty Shades Darker teasers and posters, asking if Dakota finds the use of masks especially arousing. Johnson declined to comment, however, for fear of having her answer turned into another misquoted headline.
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Dakota Johnson Says Her Parents Couldn’t Keep Her From Doing Fifty Shades Darker
Ms. Johnson says her mother, actress Melanie Griffith, has taught her to be comfortable with her body and to be proud of herself, according to News.com.au. She adds that Griffith wanted her to grow up understanding that all women are beautiful and there’s no shame in being female. As enlightened as Melanie was in raising her daughter and as supportive as dad, Don Johnson, has always been of Dakota, the actress says her parents warned her against doing Fifty Shades of Grey.
While the role of Anastasia Steele required a lot of nude scenes and love scenes, that wasn’t the strongest concern Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith had for trying to sway Dakota against joining the Fifty Shades franchise. Experienced actors themselves, they recognized that taking on such a sexually charged role would require an actor with a thick skin for dealing with fans and critics.
The Fifty Shades Darker star says her parents felt she was too tender for such a controversial role, but Ms. Johnson counters that idea by saying she is tender, but she also has a tough side.
“And when it comes to taking on this role, they didn’t have a choice. I was pretty adamant,” says Dakota.
Ms. Johnson adds that they still haven’t watched Fifty Shades of Grey and probably won’t see Fifty Shades Darker, even though Don and Melanie are eager to see the films that have launched their daughter’s success. Admittedly, it would be “inappropriate” for her parents to see these films, says Dakota Johnson.
Still, Dakota knows her family is proud of her and always supportive.
“They don’t judge me on what projects I decide to do,” says Johnson. “They judge me on what kind of human I am to other humans.”
Fifty Shades Darker hits theaters on February 10.
[Featured Image by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images]