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Fifty Shades loses male lead

Charlie Hunnam in Pacific Rim

The British actor cast to play the older lover in the big screen adaptation of the erotic best-seller Fifty Shades of Grey has pulled out of the project.

The studio, Universal, said Charlie Hunnam was withdrawing from the production because of his busy schedule. The actor, who stars in the TV show Sons of Anarchy, is said to have too little time to prepare for his role in the film. The studio said the decision was mutual.

The casting of the 33 year old in the role raised eyebrows among some fans of EL James’ book, and sources have told The Hollywood Reporter that the actor had been overwhelmed by the attention he’d received since being cast, and got cold feet.

Dakota Johnson remains attached to star as Anastasia Steele in the film, to be directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson. But the pressure is on to find a new co-star as Universal has already set 1st August 2014 for the film’s release.

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