Charlie Hunnam is hot property right now. Having starred on “Sons Of Anarchy” wrapping up (the show begins its seventh and final season on FX tonight), and with “Pacific Rim” seemingly profitable enough to justify a sequel, the British actor is more in demand than ever. He’ll reteam with Guillermo Del Toro on both “Crimson Peak” and “Pacific Rim 2, and he’s said to be attached to survival drama “The Mountain Between Us,” Guy Ritchie‘s “Knights Of The Round Table: King Arthur“ and a remake of “Escape Of New York.”
But one project that Hunnam didn’t complete was next year’s adaptation of erotic literary blockbuster “Fifty Shades Of Grey.” The actor was originally cast in the title role of billionaire/S&M enthusiast Christian Grey, but he dropped out of the project two months later, and Jamie Dornan assumed the role. In a new interview with Moviefone, Hunnam has made the reason for his exit clear.
Hunnam explains that he wanted to do the project: “I wouldn’t have signed up in the first place if I didn’t want to do it. [But] it was a really really difficult time in my life.” The actor says that he “fell in love with the character,” but it soon became clear that the schedule was too much. “I was going to finish ‘Sons’ at 11pm Friday night, get on the plane Saturday morning to Vancouver for ‘Fifty,’ missing the whole first week of rehearsal and start shooting Monday morning. And I was going to shoot that film, wrap that on the Wednesday and the following Monday I was going to start shooting ‘Crimson Peak’ in Toronto. I just had… something of a nervous breakdown.”
And all this shooting and traveling would also have been coming off the press tour for “Pacific Rim” as well. To this day, he’s upset about it. “I really didn’t want to fail on such a grand scale, and I just couldn’t transition from Jax Teller to Christian Grey in 48 hours. I bit off more than I could chew and it was painful. I loved the character and I wanted to do it.” It doesn’t seem like Hunnam’s career has taken too much of a hit, but we’d suggest to his better half that maybe they should just go out for dinner next Valentine’s Day: that’s when “Fifty Shades Of Grey” (directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson, and starring Dornan as Christian Grey opposite Dakota Johnson) will be released.