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How soon until EL James has made more money than her fictional billionaire Christian Grey? Maybe not long at all if the presales for Grey are any indication.
The new book, a retelling of Fifty Shades of Grey from Christian’s perspective (the original was told from virginal college student Anastasia Steele’s point of view) and announced on June 1 for a June 18 publication (Christian’s birthday, natch), has shot to the top of presales rankings.
It is No. 1 on both Amazon’s print book and Kindle lists, and it’s No. 1 at BN.com, the online outlet for Barnes & Noble. This despite (or maybe because of) the fact that the original trilogy has sold more than 125 million copies in 52 different languages (Albanian! Tagalog! Hebrew!). The book went to No. 1 within hours of James’ announcement via Twitter of the new project and has remained lodged there since.
The movie adaptation of Fifty Shades, which premiered on Feb. 13, grossed $569 million worldwide. There are plans for a sequel, but the project has not yet gotten underway and there have been some tension between James and filmmakers about who might script it.
Universal, which made the original movie, owns the film rights to the characters but was unaware of the spinoff. The company has no plans to turn Grey into a movie right now, and the stars of Fifty Shades, Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan, are not signed for a spinoff (though they are signed for a sequel).
For the last year or so, James has said she had been writing something new but had been coy about exactly what.
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