‘How Could You Not Have Warned Us?’: Dakota Johnson’s Famous Family Was Horrified By Portrayal Of Grandmother’s Abuse By Hitchcock In HBO’s The Girl
Dakota Johnson has opened up about her family’s feelings when first watching HBO’s The Girl.
As you know, long before Dakota found fame in 50 Shades of Grey, she was already Hollywood royalty as the daughter of movie stars Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith — whose own mother Tippi Hedren starred in Alfred Hitchcock’s blockbuster The Birds.
Sadly, decades after that movie became a cinematic horror classic, the story of what happened behind-the-scenes became an infamous IRL horror story. In her 2016 memoir, Hedren opened up about the abuse and harassment she faced from the tyrannical director.
Dakota, never one to back down from controversy, spoke out about her grandmother’s life. In The Hollywood Reporter’s podcast Always Chatter, she said Hitchcock “ruined” the Marnie star’s career:
“Hitchcock ruined her career because she didn’t want to sleep with him, and he terrorized her. And was never held accountable … It’s hard to talk about because she’s my grandmother. You don’t want to imagine somebody taking advantage of your grandmother.”
Truly awful. But if you think imagining it is bad, imagine being with your whole family as they watch it!
HBO’s 2012 film The Girl told the story of the turbulent relationship between the actress and the director, played by Sienna Miller and Toby Jones, respectively. In her Vanity Fair cover story this week, Dakota called out the television network for bringing them in to watch — but not “warning” them about the shocking content of the movie!
“We sat at HBO, my family, and watched that movie together. It was one of those moments where you’re just like ‘How could you not have warned us?’ We’re in a room with some execs. Maybe this warranted a little conversation beforehand?”
The Fifty Shades of Grey star described how her grandmother — then about 82 years old — was “reminded of everything she went through” when watching the movie:
“You look over and you see a woman who’s just been reminded of everything she went through, and it was heartbreaking. She was an amazing actress and he stopped her from having a career.”
Just terrible! A movie about the abuse and trauma she went through definitely warranted a warning!
Of course the real villain was always Hitchcock himself. Dakota went on to call out the late filmmaker as a “tyrant” who was poisoned by power:
“What happened with my grandmother was horrific because Hitchcock was a tyrant. He was talented and prolific — and important in terms of art — but power can poison people.”
What she told VF next is unbelievable — and even the movies didn’t show it. Hitchcock allegedly gifted Melanie Griffith something “rather disturbing” when she was only a child — a tiny replica of her mother in a coffin!
“It’s alarming and dark and really, really sad for that little girl. Really scary.”
We agree! Who gives a child a doll of their mother in a coffin? TBH that may be scarier than killer birds…
It’s so sad that Tippi had to relive her awful abuse when watching a movie about herself. We really hope she’s doing better now — and that more people are mindful about potentially triggering topics!