Protesters Turned Up To 50 Shades Of Grey’s Premiere, And So Did We

50 Shades Of Abuse thought the 'abuse would become more clear and obvious' in the film version...


by Cat Olley |

Last night London's Leicester Square Odeon hosted the premiere of 50 Shades Of Grey. Luckily we’re not tied, whipped or bound to saying it’s going to be great before seeing it, so we reported from outside the red carpet. Yes, that’s outside it.

A group of domestic abuse activists held up banners reading '50 Shades Is Abuse’ and ‘Mr Grey is a rapist’. One of the activists, Chris, told us that her problem with the book, at least (she has read it), is: ‘ Model of consent. Consent isn’t just a case of “okay then” or “I’m not going to object”, consent should be something that is active, that is informed as well, and that’s really important when you’re in the bedroom, but also in other areas of your life as well.’

To these protestors, it’s not about the sex in the relationship, but Mr Christian Grey – a handsome millionaire – having control over Ana: ‘It’s about the relationship in general, he’s very controlling, he makes decisions for her, he’s very much coercive. He says: “I’ll track you down with your cell phone”, “you cannot run away from me” and uses manipulative techniques on her. She’s confused and afraid and she’s not thinking straight - that’s just not romantic behaviour.’

READ MORE: There's A 50 Shades Of Grey Trailer And OMG

The group’s founder, Natalie Collins agreed: ‘He controls what she eats, he gives her an approved clothes list, he buys the company she works for, he sells her car and gives her a car that she approves of, he very very quickly takes away all of her independence, all of her ability to be a person in her own right.’

As for reports that director Sam Taylor-Wood has toned down the kink for the film? It’s not great news: ‘We really believed that when the film came out, it was going to show was what people wouldn’t be able to see when reading the book; the abuse would become more clear and obvious.’

Instead? ‘It’s a massive social phenomenon. Worldwide, 50 Shades has almost become shorthand for good sex, or for romance, and neither of those things are helpful descriptions of what’s going on in the book.’


The domestic abuse campaigners weren’t the only interesting sorts.

Seemingly too busy with their performance to break and talk to us about what they were doing, a group of people dressed in skin-tight black, cat masks and other bondage-inspired gear were causing a mini-scene. While one man chanted ‘there are three stages of chanting’, two women took it in turns to spank each other – first gently, second firmly, and the third time hard. One used a whip, the other used a long prosthetic hand.

Maybe they wanted to make a point about the lack of BDSM in the film? We might never know…

For the record, E.L. James, who wrote 50 Shades the book, explained: ‘Why do you think there are so many women here if it’s about domestic abuse and domestic violence? Don’t get me started. No it’s not – OK?’

And the director, Sam Taylor-Wood told the BBC: I don’t think you can judge something without seeing it. What Dakota and I did throughout the journey of Anastasia was to empower her.’

Shady, or what?

Like this? You might also be interested in:

Jump On The BDSM Bandwagon And Throw Your Mates A Ridiculous 50 Shades Party

Jamie Dornan Insists 50 Shades Isn't Anti-Women

Lose Your Lunchtime To Ellie Goulding's 50 Shades Of Grey Song

Follow Cat on Twitter @CatOlley

**Additional reporting by Sophie Wilkinson ****Follow Sophie on Twitter @sophwilkinson


This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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