Charlie Hunnam will not appear in Fifty Shades Of Grey after all. The Sons Of Anarchy actor shockingly dropped out of the film on Saturday. He was set to star in the highly-anticipated film as Christian Grey, alongside Dakota Johnson as Anastasia Steele.
"The filmmakers of Fifty Shades Of Grey and Charlie Hunnam have agreed to find another male lead given Hunnam's immersive TV schedule which is not allowing him time to adequately prepare for the role of Christian Grey," Universal Pictures said in a statement.
Still, some are not buying this explanation from Charlie Hunnam. As Deadline notes, he likely knew his filming schedule before he signed on for the Fifty Shades Of Grey film. So perhaps he simply had a change of heart and decided that starring in a film based on an erotic novel was not for him.
This news of Charlie Hunnam quitting Fifty Shades Of Grey may actually be a positive to many fans of the book. Hunnam and Johnson's castings were immediately met with backlash, with some calling for both of them to be replaced. A Change.org petition urged producers to fire Hunnam and Johnson and instead cast Matt Bomer and Alexis Bledel in the lead roles. The petition has been signed more than 86,000 times.
"Matt Bomer is the PERFECT DESCRIPTION OF CHRISTIAN GREY AND ALEXIS BLEDEL IS THE PERFECT ACTRESS TO REPRESENT ANASTASIA STEELE and if THEY ARE NOT, NOBODY WILL BE And I read the whole trilogy and I can assure that Matt is the perfect actor for this movie and Alexis too," the petition read. "So please PLEASE, all of the GREYsessed and Bomerettes in the world NEED those actors. They always will be for us the Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele. WE CAN DO ANYTHING GUYS, ANYTHING."
Bomer later responded to this petition, though he firmly placed his support behind Dakota Johnson and Charlie Hunnam.
I'm so grateful for the fans and touched," Bomer told ETonline. "I'm looking forward to seeing the movie with Charlie and Dakota."
"There is a lot that goes into casting that isn't just looks," Brunetti tweeted after the castings were announced. "Talent, availability, their desire to do it, chemistry with other actor, etc. So if your favorite wasn't cast, then it is most likely due to something on that list. Keep that in mind while hating and keep perspective."
So now, producers will need to find another man with that same level of chemistry with Johnson. Bomer would certainly be a popular choice, though we should also keep an eye on Robert Pattinson. Writer Bret Easton Ellis tweeted last month that he spoke to James at a party over the summer. There, the author supposedly revealed that the Twilight star was her first choice for the role of Christian Grey. A Hollywood Reporter story also claimed that Ryan Gosling, Garrett Hedlund, and Christian Cooke were in the running, as well, though the former two actors turned the role down.