In Conclusion
Fifty Shades of Grey is a high-risk, high-reward project for pretty much everyone involved except for author E.L. James, who has long since made her fortune off the franchise. The buzz surrounding the books has lessened considerably since last summer, and by the time the first movie arrives next summer it may be hard to get anyone to admit they were ever into the "mommy porn." Johnson and Hunnam, and the many agents and managers who surround them, definitely know this, but they're also at points in their careers where the potential rewards are worth the enormous risk. Looking at it optimistically, Fifty Shades is a chance for Twilight-level fame without the boring abstinence, the bad CGI or the screaming teenage fan base. Worst case scenario, it's an embarrassing flop and Johnson and Hunnam aren't allowed to go near a sex scene for a few years.

But even then, it'll be the Fifty Shades brand name that gets the blame-- not those two, who aren't nearly as famous as that knotted tie on the cover. To get the blame for a flop based on an established property, you've either got to be a star who should be capable of selling the film-- i.e. Ryan Reynolds in Green Lantern, Johnny Depp in The Lone Ranger-- or so remarkably awful that there's no avoiding it-- Taylor Kitsch's double-dose of John Carter and Battleship was enough to halt his career. Unless Fifty Shades features some The Room-level bad sex, Hunnam and Johnson would be at worst considered victims of a book that was never all that great to begin with. And hey, once again, there's always the possibility that it somehow works-- and those two, with everything to gain, will work their asses off to make it happen. When you're on the up-and-up, the attention-getting risk is almost always the one worth taking.

Will Fifty Shades of Grey hurt or help their careers?

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