Belfast Telegraph

Hunnam and Johnson for 50 Shades?

Charlie Hunnam and Dakota Johnson are tipped to be "serious contenders" for the lead roles in the Fifty Shades Of Grey film.

The erotic novel by British writer EL James is being adapted for the big screen with Nowhere Boy's Sam Taylor-Johnson signed up to direct. Since the film project was first revealed there have been numerous stars linked to the lead characters of Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey.

Now Twitchfilm has reported that Pacific Rim hunk Charlie is Universal and Focus' studios front runner to play Christian Grey.

And The Wrap has said Dakota Johnson, the 23-year-old daughter of Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith, is a serious contender to play Anastasia. Dakota's biggest role to date was opposite Justin Timberlake in The Social Network.

But sources have told Variety the casting process is still on going and the studios are still looking at a list of possible actors for the film. The release date has now been set for August 1, 2014 and so a decision is expected to be imminent.

Other stars to be linked to date include Alexis Bledel, Mila Kunis, Ian Somerhalder and Ryan Gosling.

Taylor-Johnson's husband, Kick-Ass star Aaron, who starred in her film Nowhere Boy, has ruled himself out.

The studios have also acquired the rights to the follow-up books Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed, with author James serving as one of the producers.

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