Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland's Jamie Dornan lands lead role in Fifty Shades of Grey movie

By Claire Cromie

Northern Irish actor Jamie Dornan has landed the lead role in the movie version of Fifty Shades of Grey, according to Variety magazine.

The 31-year-old Calvin Klein model-turned-actor, from Holywood, reportedly takes the place of Charlie Hunnam, who dropped out just a month after being announced in the role of Christian Grey, citing a busy schedule.

Dornan, who now lives in London with his singer wife Amelia Warner, would be catapulted to international stardom by the high-profile Fifty Shades gig.

US actress Dakota Johnson (23) has already been cast to play innocent college graduate Anastasia Steele in the big-screen adaptation of the popular EL James erotic novels.

Dornan was last on our screens in the Belfast-set BBC crime drama The Fall, as grief counsellor Paul Spector by day and a sexually motivated serial killer by night.

The Co Down boy plays Sheriff Graham Humbert in ABC series “Once Upon a Time” and was regularly pictured in gossip magazines when he dated Keira Knightly for two years.

This year he became a patron of Carryduff-based TinyLife - Northern Ireland's charity for premature and vulnerable babies. Dornan has long been associated with the charity through his father, Professor James Dornan, a founding member who still sits on the board of directors.

According to Variety, when Charlie Hunnam exited Fifty Shades of Grey, U and Focus executives "decided to go for more of a discovery" and brought in Dornan and Billy Magnussen to test opposite Dakota Johnson last Friday.

Pressure was on the find a replacement for Hunnam, as the project was due to begin filming on November 1st.

Artist turned filmmaker, Sam Taylor-Johnson, is directing the movie and the studio hopes to have the movie in cinemas in August of 2014.

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