Charlie Hunnam is speaking out for the first time about being cast in the highly-coveted role of Christian Grey in the movie adaptation of the erotic book Fifty Shades of Grey, and the controversy that surrounds the casting announcement.
Hunnam, star of FX’s biker hit Sons of Anarchy, tells ET, "[I am] so excited to be entrusted with this empowered character."
When it comes to the hubbub over his casting, the 33-year-old actor admits, "I had anticipated it, these books were a global phenomenon. I isolate myself [so I] haven't been too aware of what's [going on in] social media."
Hunnam adds of the Twitter-verse, "I don't really engage in social media, and I don't really watch the news or read newspapers so I haven't been too cognizant of exactly what the reaction has been. But I'm just so excited to be entrusted with this really powerful character, and just really excited and eager to start filming and start bringing him to life."
While discussing the audition process, Hunnam reveals that he did a work session with his Fifty Shades leading lady, 23-year-old Dakota Johnson, who will take on the role of Anastasia Steele, and that she was the only person he auditioned with for the part. He explains, "[I] wanted to feel like [Christian Grey] was in my bones."
Not everyone was thrilled with the casting, with 40,000+ fans signing a petition requesting that the roles be re-cast with White Collar star Matt Bomer as the wealthy S&M enthusiast and Gilmore Girls' Alexis Bledel as the virginal Anastasia.
Check out ET's interview with Hunnam at the Sons Of Anarchy season 6 Hollywood premiere, and then let us know: Do you think he's right for the role of Christian Grey?