Jamie Dornan Insists Fifty Shades Is About Love Not Sex

Fifty Shades of Grey may be based on one of the steamiest books ever to be released, but the movie’s Christian Grey, Jamie Dornan, insists the film of EL James’ novel is all about the love story and not the sex.

It’s just a matter of weeks now until the Fifty Shades movie hits cinemas in February, and as the anticipation builds for one of 2015’s most hyped releases, Jamie has opened up on his biggest role to date to ELLE UK.

The 32-year-old stars alongside Dakota Johnson in the film, and although his character Christian has a penchant for BDSM, Jamie has said that for him, the focus of director Sam Taylor Johnson’s adaptation is the romance between Grey and Anastasia Steele.

“The love story is more important than the BDSM aspect,” says the Northern Irish actor. “I mean, we are going to tell a love story, you know, it can’t just be what happens in the Red Room, that’s not a film. There’s so much more going on than that.”

Jeff Hahn, courtesy of ELLE UK

We already know the film can’t possibly include all of James’ most steamiest moments, thanks to Jamie’s previous promise that he won’t be getting completely naked, and then there’s the issue of the film’s rating. For fans of the book, it’s always been as much about the love story as the bedroom dalliances, so it sounds like Johnson and her team have struck the right balance. That doesn’t meant there won’t be some sex though, just don’t compare Christian’s tastes for that of Jamie’s other famous character – psychopath killer Paul Spector in the BBC drama The Fall.

“They’re both tying women to beds, yes; but for very different reasons,” he says. “If the motives are so different, then the action has to be different. I’d be really upset if people think that I’m giving the same performance twice.”

Adding his thoughts on the anti-feminist criticism directed against James’ story, Jamie says of his experience researching the world of BDSM: “I can understand why people say tying a woman up and spanking her is misogynistic. But actually, more men are submissives than women. Very powerful men. It’s a far bigger scene than I imagined: in pretty much any city in the world that you could name, people want to get spanked with a paddle with studs on it.”

Jeff Hahn, courtesy of ELLE UK

The interview with ELLE also sees Jamie open up about how Fifty Shades has already changed his life, in that his fame level has shot up over the past year. The former Calvin Klein model had a taste of the paps a few years back when he was dating Keira Knightley, and it’s still not a side of fame that he’s a fan of. “You don’t do it to have some guy sitting in a f*cking bush outside your house with a camera. That’s not why you do it,” he admits. “I just couldn’t do an office job; I don’t have that temperament. But yeah, I don’t know how you can prepare for it. You can’t get in sandbags. Buy loads of hoodies and caps? I’ll deal with it when it comes. I feel pretty secure about who I am. It’s not my first time at the rodeo.”

Aside from his Christian Grey casting the past year or so has bought another major change in Jamie’s life. He and his wife Amelia welcomed their first child, a daughter in November 2013. The actor is pretty private about his family but did reveal in the interview that being away on set has been so much more difficult since becoming a father. “I’ve had to be away the last couple of weekends, and I come back and I barely recognise her, and it’s awful; she changes so much,” he says. “And then I have this huge fear that she won’t recognise me. The beard helps, but I had to shave it off a couple of times, so she’s been shocked for the first few hours. She looks at me like: ‘Do I love you? I think I love you.’ I have to win back her trust.”

Full interview appears in the February issue of ELLE UK, on sale 2nd January. Also available as a digital edition. Watch an exclusive behind-the-scenes video of Jamie Dornan, at www.ELLEuk.com/jamie-dornan