Charlie Hunnam says 'family stuff' caused 50 Shades exit

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A literature student named Anastasia Steele meets a handsome, yet tormented, billionaire named Christian Grey.
October 22nd, 2013

Charlie Hunnam has broken his silence following his departure from the 'Fifty Shades of Grey' film - revealing family commitments has led to his exit from the project.

The 'Sons of Anarchy' actor, who was set to play bondage-loving billionaire Christian Grey in Universal's adaptation of E.L. James' best-selling novel, says he's focusing on family time and ''a new chapter of life''.

The 33-year-old British actor told E! News: ''It's been a really busy time. I have had some family stuff going on so (I'm) just trying to stay focused and stay positive, keep trying to do a good job at work and be with my family.''

According to insiders, Charlie had been ''overwhelmed'' by the media attention on the steamy flick, after landing the lead role in early September.

Universal said he pulled out due to his ''immersive'' TV schedule on 'Sons of Anarchy' and now they have accepted his resignation they are now on the hunt for a replacement to star alongside Dakota Johnson, who will play Anastasia Steele in the movie.

Charlie, whose father died this year, said: ''I've got some family stuff I have to tend to.

''So when I wrap the show, I am going to go to England and see my people and then I have a film that I am doing with Guillermo (del Toro).

''So I am going to go and do that and concentrate on the final seasons of 'Sons...'.''

Charlie is anticipating a ''really emotional time'' for the cast when the final scenes are being shot.

He said: ''We are like a family and have become very, very close and become dear friends to each other so it's going to be sad and finish up and say goodbye to everyone, but we've got like 13, maybe even a few more, episodes.

''But I just want to finish that strong and go on to a new chapter of life.''

Rumours are rife about who will replace Charlie in the film, with Irish actor Jamie Dornan - Keira Knightley's ex-boyfriend - believed to have auditioned for the role.

The movie is being directed by Sam Taylor-Wood, who is also said to be considering her actor husband Aaron Taylor-Johnson for the part.