Ben Affleck isn’t the only one getting blowback. It didn’t take long for the Internet to weigh in on one of the most anticipated casting announcements in years: the leads of the big-screen “Fifty Shades of Grey” adaptation.
After over a year of speculation, it was revealed on Monday that “Sons of Anarchy” star Charlie Hunnam will play Christian Grey and Dakota Johnson will take on the role of Anastasia Steele.
The casting, of course, drew serious fire from some fans who didn’t agree with the choices, which inspired James to speak out. “To all the supporters, lovers and haters — thank you so much for the passion that you have for this project,” she wrote on Monday. “You all rock. All of you.”
To all the supporters, lovers and haters – thank you so much for the passion that you have for this project. You all rock. All of you. ♡
— E L James (@E_L_James) September 2, 2013
Some complained that Johnson (“The Social Network,” “21 Jump Street”), daughter of actors Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith, did not have enough of a name to take on one of the leads in the film version of the S&M-heavy book, which has sold more than 70 million copies worldwide.
Others lodged the same concerns over British actor Hunnam, whose film credits include “Pacific Rim” and “Cold Mountain.” The grousing came after some other more well-known actors were reportedly in the running, including Emma Watson, Imogen Poots, Armie Hammer and Ian Somerhalder.
“Worst casting ever,” wrote Dollolsen on MTV News in reaction to the announcement. “She is wrong for SO MANY REASONS.” Alley added, “Sooooooo disappointed! I’m okay with the guy, I guess… but the girl is NOT at all like the book describes anna.”
Producer Dana Brunetti also defended the final casting, tweeting, “There is a lot that goes into casting that isn’t just looks. Talent, availability, their desire to do it, chemistry with the other actor, etc.”
There is a lot that goes into casting that isn't just looks. Talent, availability, their desire to do it, chemistry with other actor, etc.
— Dana Brunetti (@DanaBrunetti) September 2, 2013
“So if your favorite wasn’t cast, then it is most likely due to something on that list,” he continued. “Keep that in mind while hating and keep perspective.” He took the hate in stride, later thanking all of James’ fans for their “overwhelming support” of the choices. By early Tuesday morning (September 3) he seemed to have had enough, writing, “There can only be one … and it is done.”