Charlie Hunnam isn't the only hunky British actor that almost played the titular role in the upcoming adaptation of best-selling erotic novel 50 Shades of Grey.
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In an interview with Vanity Fair, Les Miserables star Eddie Redmayne admitted that during a press junket for the film, a reporter asked if he would consider the part of kinky businessman Christian Grey. He said yes, but soon received backlash from the trilogy’s author, E.L. James.
"She took to her Twitter feed to go, 'Under no circumstances!'" Redmayne recalls. "I was like, all right, all right! Am I that bad? I can put a whip in my hand. I can get all kinky, can’t I?"
The part of Grey eventually went to Redmayne’s fellow countryman Jamie Dornan, with whom the actor shared more than just casting calls when they both moved to Hollywood to begin their careers.
"We were staying on friends' agents' floors, and renting places together," Redmayne says of the group of young British actors, which included Dornan, Andrew Garfield, and Tom Sturridge. "We used to go to the Standard Hotel in West Hollywood and split a sandwich between us because that meant we could get cheaper parking."
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There seems to be no love lost for Redmayne, who landed his own juicy role this year. The actor will portray acclaimed British physicist Stephen Hawking in the biopic The Theory of Everything, which comes out November 7, and is already generating Oscar buzz. An statue would be nice, but for Redmayne, the real award is Hawking’s approval.
"This moment when he saw the film and the family saw the film and approved, it was like the greatest compliment I could have hoped for," the actor gushes. "And the fact that audiences seem to be seeing it and enjoying it, my god that makes me incredibly happy and I'm very lucky for it."