The film's director, Sam Taylor-Johnson. (Joel Ryan/Invision for Universal Pictures/AP Images)
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When Universal bumped "Fifty Shades of Grey" from August 2014 to Valentine's Day 2015, it seemed like a cheesy gimmick.The adaptation of author E. L. James' erotic novel debuted to an astounding $94.4 million domestic and $172 million international across the long President's Day weekend, breaking box office records for the month of February, female filmmakers and R-rated movies in what is proving to be a perfect storm of intrigue, brand and crafty execution by Universal Pictures.Not only did it spark a culture-wide dialogue, it became an event movie centered on a single date: Valentine's Day.Whereas most films with ardent fan bases drop off dramatically on day two, "Fifty Shades of Grey" grew. The first "Twilight" film fell 40.8 percent on its second day.
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