Dakota Johnson Explains 'Complicated' Feelings About Motherhood, Ahead Of The Lost Daughter's Release

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  • Chris Martin
    Chris Martin
    English singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist
  • Dakota Johnson
    Dakota Johnson
    American actress, model, executive producer and activist from Texas
Photo credit: Ernesto Ruscio - Getty Images
Photo credit: Ernesto Ruscio - Getty Images

Dakota Johnson has revealed her complicated feelings towards motherhood, ahead of psychological drama film, The Lost Daughter, being released next month.

The Fifty Shades of Grey actor has said: 'The film makes it OK to have complicated feelings about being a mother,' when speaking to The Times.

Reiterating her point, Johnson, who is in a relationship with rock band Coldplay artist Chris Martin, went on to tell the news outlet: 'For somebody like me, who isn’t yet a mother and maybe doesn’t want to be a mother, it makes that OK. Complicated, but OK.'

Johnson, who plays the young mother of a doll-obsessed daughter in the new drama, which has been adapted from Elena Ferrante’s namesake 2006 novel, also touched on the subject of fertility.

The 32-year-old said: 'It would also be cool if Cambridge [university] offered to freeze eggs,' adding: 'With technology, you can have a biological child until you’re 50. That’s cool.'

Photo credit: Taylor Hill - Getty Images
Photo credit: Taylor Hill - Getty Images

When discussing her character in The Lost Daughter to The Hollywood Reporter recently, Johnson said of her character: 'Nina is struggling, she’s disappearing. To have this woman whose internal landscape is so different than what she’s projecting, that was really, really special. Because you see her, and no one is thinking about that girl’s mind. I am not a mother, but I know what it feels like to be scared or to be like, "Will I be a good mother?" But for some reason, there’s this stigma around talking about that. And there’s a stigma around having just the thought of, ‘What if I walked out that f*cking door? For a week or a minute for a cigarette.’ But you’re not supposed to say that out loud. Why? It’s so human and so relatable.'

The actor, whose breakthrough role as the vulnerable Anastasia "Ana" Steele in provocative romantic drama Fifty Shades of Grey, alongside Jamie Dornan, catapulted her to star status, has acknowledged that she wasn't the obvious choice for the role of Nina in The Lost Daughter.

She also said: 'I hadn’t ever read women written like that,' which she thought upon reading the script.

Maggie Gyllenhaal, who directed and co-wrote The Lost Daughter, which also stars The Crown's Oscar and Emmy-winning Olivia Colman, said of Colman's character Leda: 'I had all these things on my mind [as a mother], but didn’t see them represented anywhere. What Leda does is extreme. I’m not going to leave my kids, but no parent has not thought of just walking out that f***ing door.'

Photo credit: Michael Loccisano - Getty Images
Photo credit: Michael Loccisano - Getty Images

Gyllenhaal, 44, who shares two children - Ramona Sarsgaard, 15, and Gloria Ray Sarsgaard, nine, with fellow actor husband Peter Sarsgaard, said: 'Our survival depends on our parents having a huge investment in us. We can’t allow the possibility they are ambivalent and that stays in us when we’re adults.'

Speaking of her decision to address the topic of motherhood more closely for the drama, the actor and filmmaker, who's early roles include starring as the sadistic, hyper-sexual female lead in the 2002 movie Secretary, directed by Steven Shainberg, said: 'Mothering is as important to me as anything I could make a film about. I say this because here I am — a professional, educated artist. I’ve made a film which is an expression of me and it’s about mothering. Because my identity as a mother is a massive part of who I am and that’s true for many women.'

The Lost Daughter sees Leda as a middle-aged mother and languages professor observing Nina, who is in her twenties, and her young daughter.

Leda is enthralled by their captivating relationship, and when Nina's daughter goes missing, Leda is reminded of hard moments from her own past.

As for Johnson, whose own mother, Melanie Griffith, starred as protagonist Tess McGill in late 80s, movie Working Girl, while her character in the drama is a mother-of-one and the subject of Colman's character's obsession, in real life she is yet to work out whether motherhood is her calling.

Photo credit: Pascal Le Segretain - Getty Images
Photo credit: Pascal Le Segretain - Getty Images

Johnson is, though, an award-buzzed career-focussed women who is carving out an acting career on her own, despite her parents' fame. (In case you didn't know her dad is Miami Vice star Don Johnson.)

As well as her career, Johnson's romance with Martin has caught people's attention.

The pair, who remain private about their relationship, were announced as a couple in December 2017.

Photo credit: Samir Hussein - Getty Images
Photo credit: Samir Hussein - Getty Images

'Dakota and Chris are definitely dating,' a source told US Weekly at the time.

'They’ve gotten to know each other really well and are very comfortable [with] one another. It's more than just a fling', the source added.

Around the time that their relationship became public, Johnson and Martin, the latter of whom shares two children, Apple, 17, and Moses, 15, with his former wife, actress and Goop founder Gwyneth Paltrow, were spotted in Israel together, at Australian singer Nick Cave’s concert.

Martin is said to be attracted to Johnson's free spirit, the same publication reported.

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