Charlie Hunnam Reveals Fifty Shades Of Grey 'Breakdown'
The man originally cast as Christian Grey spills the beans on his exit...
Charlie Hunnam has finally opened up about the reasons behind his departure from Fifty Shades Of Grey.
The British actor, best-known as Jax from Sons Of Anarchy, was the original choice to play Christian Grey in the movie version of EL James' erotic novel.
But he dropped out of the project shortly after his role was announced - and met with dismay by many fans.
It had been speculated that the adverse fan reaction had been the real reason for his departure, but now the 34-year-old star has admitted that he suffered "something of a nervous breakdown" over the job.
Speaking to Moviefone, he insisted: "I wouldn't have signed up in the first place if I didn't want to do it. It was a really, really difficult time in my life."
And he explained that he had later realised it was going to be difficult to combine the movie with his commitments on Sons Of Anarchy and Crimson Peak.
"I was going to finish Sons at like 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 like... frankly, something of a nervous breakdown."
He insisted that he had wanted to play Mr Grey after meeting director Sam Taylor-Johnson, explaining: "I started talking about this thing and I just got so excited. I fell in love with the character and started seeing him and becoming intoxicated, which is the way I work: I find a character I love and I start thinking about it all the time."
But ultimately he said he realised he had "bitten off more than he could chew".
"I just said, 'I can't... I can't...'," he explained.
"To fail on such a grand scale - because Fifty's going to be massive, it's going to be huge. 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 was just a s**t situation, I was really, really, sorry to do it. It was one of those 'damned if you do, damned if you don't' situations."
Hunnam is now reportedly in the frame to play King Arthur for Guy Ritchie.