British R&B singer Rita Ora will be the latest addition to Universal Pictures’ Fifty Shades of Grey film, the Comcast Corp-owned studio said on Monday.
Ora, 23, will play Mia Grey, the adopted younger sister of billionaire protagonist Christian Grey, in the film adaptation of E. L. James’ best-selling Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy of erotica novels.
Albanian-born Ora will join lead cast members Jamie Dornan, who plays the charming billionaire with a secret sexual fetish, and Dakota Johnson as shy student Anastasia Steele, who embarks on a passionate affair with Christian Grey.
Filming has started on the production in westernmost Canada.
Due to be released on Valentine’s Day 2015, the first of the trilogy began shooting in Vancouver’s historic cobblestone Gastown neighbourhood on Sunday, said the daily Vancouver Sun.
Film records show it is scheduled to wrap up in February.
The 2011 book with its explicitly erotic scenes featuring bondage and sadism/masochism has topped best-seller lists around the world, shifting more than 90 million copies in 52 languages.
The second and third volumes, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed, were published in 2012.
The film is being directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson.
Filmed under the code name The Adventures of Max & Banks, the film is reportedly to be released in two versions: one that is sexually explicit to satisfy fans’ expectations and one that is softer for a general audience.
This will be the third movie role for Ora, who also appeared in the 2004 British film Spivs and made a cameo in this year’s Fast & Furious 6 action film.
The Hot Right Now singer, signed to Jay Z’s Roc Nation label, is expected to release her second album in spring 2014.
The Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy sold 90 million copies worldwide and became a cultural phenomenon known for its raunchy scenes, spawning offshoots and parodies.