Dakota Johnson Is Bringing a Real Story of Government-Forced Sterilization to the Screen

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Dakota Johnson’s next starring role in a book-to-movie adaptation is far less sexy and way more brutal (and scary, and true) than 50 Shades of Grey. Deadline reports that Johnson will star in Unfit, an adaptation of the nonfiction book Imbeciles: The Supreme Court, American Eugenics, and the Sterilization of Carrie Buck.

Johnson will play Carrie Buck, a young woman who was sterilized against her will in Virginia in the 1920s. The procedure was done while Buck was institutionalized in the Virginia Colony for Epileptics and Feeble-Minded. Though Buck was by every account an average school student, she was committed by her foster family under the charges of immorality and prostitution after she was raped by their nephew and bore a child out of wedlock. Buck took the cast to the U.S. Supreme Court, where they ruled in Buck v. Bell eight-to-one in favor of the Virginia Sterilization Bill that allowed the state to continue to sterilize women “unfit” for motherhood.

“Like many, I was not privy to this shocking and fascinating moment in American history,” Dakota said about the project. “I quickly became obsessed with the prospect of shedding light on the massive misstep in American justice.” She added that the movie seemed particularly timely, saying, “Certain aspects are unnervingly congruent with the relationship between the government and women today.”

Dakota Johnson to Star in Movie About Forced Sterilization