Actor Charlie Hunnam exits "Fifty Shades of Grey" film

Story highlights

  • Universal Pictures says Hunnam's TV schedule is too busy
  • Hunnam was due to play the lead role of Christian Grey
  • The movie is set to debut August 1, 2014

Charlie Hunnam, the 33-year-old star of "Sons of Anarchy," will not play the role of Christian Grey in the upcoming "Fifty Shades of Grey" film, Universal Pictures said Saturday.

"The filmmakers of 'Fifty Shades of Grey' and Charlie Hunnam have agreed to find another male lead given Hunnam's immersive TV schedule which is not allowing him time to adequately prepare for the role of Christian Grey," Universal said in a statement.

Hunnam was due to play the male lead in the film, set to debut August 1, 2014. He said he agreed to do the film because of "tangible chemistry" with co-star Dakota Johnson.

The film is based on E.L. James' erotic novel about an inexperienced college student named Anastasia Steele, played by Johnson, who gets an education at the hands of billionaire Grey.

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The movie is being directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson.

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