Universal Pictures and Focus Features secured the rights to the trilogy in March 2012. The films were produced by Michael De Luca Productions. At a fan screening of the first film in New York City on February 6, 2015, director Sam Taylor-Johnson confirmed that the book sequels Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed would also be adapted, with the first sequel then set to be released in 2016. After the announcement, Taylor-Johnson told Digital Spy that "It's not my decision [to return], and I haven't been privy to any of the discussions. " On November 12, 2015, TheWrap reported that James Foley would direct both sequels, which would be shot back-to-back in 2016, with Niall Leonard writing the script and Michael De Luca and Dana Brunetti returning to produce, along with E. L. James and Marcus Viscidi. Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan were also set to return in the lead roles. On February 8, 2016, Arielle Kebbel was cast in the film to play Gia Matteo, a beautiful architect who is hired by Christian to build his home, and on February 12, 2016, Eric Johnson was cast as Jack Hyde, Ana's boss at SIP and stalker. On February 20, 2016, Brant Daugherty signed on to play Sawyer, the personal bodyguard for Anastasia.