Charlie Hunnam was due to play Christian Grey in the big screen adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey, but he backed out a few weeks after being cast. Most people with common sense assumed that he had suddenly awakened from whatever delusional slumber he’d been in when agreeing to take the role in the first place, and that he was saving himself from a life of not being taken seriously as an actor because he took part in what is, in essence, shitty housewife porn (not that there’s anything wrong with that if that’s your thing, but let’s just call it as it is). In fact, Charlie has some serious regret over the whole thing and is basically kicking himself in the ass for dropping out and letting Jamie Dornan take home all the glory, AKA all the cash.
“It was the worst professional experience of my life,” Hunnam told V Man magazine of exiting the film. “It was the most emotionally destructive and difficult thing that I’ve ever had to deal with professionally. It was heartbreaking.”
While critics speculated that Hunnam had gotten cold feet because he was intimidated by the sexual content of the movie, he now explains that wasn’t the case.
At the time Hunnam was offered the part, he had already committed to a role in the film Crimson Peak, directed by his friend Guillermo del Toro. After thinking it over, the Sons of Anarchy actor, 35, felt he had to make a choice between the two films – and he had already made a promise to del Toro.
“I’d given Guillermo my word, over a year before, that I was going to do this film,” he explained. “People were saying, ‘Are you crazy? Guillermo still has got four months to recast, it’s the fourth lead, you can go and do this [instead].’ I said, ‘I can’t. He’s my friend.’ ”
Making the tough decision took a toll on the actor, but standing by his prior commitment was important to him. “I really, really pride myself on being a professional and a man of keeping my word,” he said. “It means a lot to me, truly.”
I’m really not quite sure what the devastating part of this is. I’m thinking he’s implying that it’s because he hates backing out of shit when he commits to something, because his word means something to him? If so, good for him. That has to be it, considering he’s previously said that doing the movie would have been a disaster (and he’s totally right about that).