'50 Shades of Grey' Movie: 7 Reasons Why Actors Don’t Want To Play Christian

Charlie Hunnam
Actor Charlie Hunnam at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah in January 2011. Reuters

Charlie Hunnam quit the “Fifty Shades of Grey” film just weeks after it was announced that he would play the beloved lead, Christian Grey. The “Sons of Anarchy” star faced tons of backlash after the announcement. Hunnam was reportedly only going to earn $125,000, E! Online wrote -- chump change by Hollywood standards.

When he first got the role, Hunnam talked about the character like it was the opportunity of a lifetime, and he said, via Universal/Focus, that the reason the FX star dropped out of the film was because of scheduling conflict. Rumors say otherwise. And consider what Quentin Tarantino’s Inglorious Basterds” character Col. Hans Lander said: “Facts can be so misleading, where rumors, true or false, are often revealing.” So why not speculate?

1.     Money.  Isn’t is always about the money? Before the cast was announced, author E.L. James had mentioned high-profile actors like Ryan Gosling and Leonardo DiCaprio would never get the role because the studios weren’t shelling out that much money. It’s been said Hunnam was offered to $125,000 to play the role. DiCaprio made $20,000,000 for “The Departed.”

2.     Sex. Sex oozes through every orifice of Christian and Anastasia’s relationship and the movie will no doubt be overtly sexual. Hunnam said he was comfortable with the amount of sex that would be in the film because of previous work on “Queer as Folk.” But how many other actors in Hollywood are really up for that? Besides, as plenty of “Fifty Shades” fans already know, the kind of acts Christian and Ana partake in aren’t exactly “vanilla.” He does make her sign a sex contract, after all.

3.     Trilogy. Anyone who signs onto the film is probably going to be locked into two more movies, baring the first one is a hit. Being a part of a trilogy leaves actors with limited choice in future roles they can take because of the “Fifty Shades” obligation.

4.     Typecasting. It was said one of the reasons Hunnam left the film was because he didn’t want to end up like “Twilight” star Robert Pattinson and be typecast in a role. Ideally, actors want to be a clean canvas that can become any character required of them, so being typecast as Seattle billionaire with a penchant for BDSM probably isn’t the most desirable thing for an actor.

5.     Being a sex object. Christian Grey is a fantasy that most woman dream about, which has drawn so many readers to the series. Here’s a man that is obsessed with one woman and wants to spend all his money on her. Not only that, Ana is the special “one” that has changed him. Who doesn’t want to be the lady to turn a potentially troubled guy around? The character is no doubt a sex object for all the previous reasons and for, of course, the actual intimacy that occurs in the book. While women are generally exploited in terms of sexuality in Hollywood more often than men, it might be a hard pill for an actor to swallow.

6.      Fans. “Fifty Shades” are devoted to the characters and the trilogy. But some cross the line. It’s nearly impossible for producers of the film to find the “perfect” Christian to satisfy everyone reader’s expectation, but there are so many fans who are dead-set on having Matt Bomber or Ian Somerhalder play the role. It’s going to be a hard expectation to meet for any actor who is not Bomer or Somerhalder -- nearly impossible, really. It’s a burden that is too heavy, even for the most narcissistic actor.

7.     Material. Other than having kinky sex, Ana talk about her inner goddess and the different ways Christian groans-- what kind of real dialogue is there? “The point is moot.” Come on. Who says that? 

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