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Fifty Shades of Grey Movie Cast, Release Date & News: 'Sons of Anarchy' Co-Star Explains Why Charlie Hunnam Quit Film

First Posted: Nov 07, 2013 12:39 PM EST
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When Charlie Hunnam dropped out of the Fifty Shades of Grey film because of a busy schedule, many skeptics raised an eyebrow. Katey Sagal, Hunnam's "Sons of Anarchy" co-star, on the other hand, believes him.

Hunnam was originally cast as Christian Grey in the film adaptation of E.L. James' erotic novel. On Oct. 12, however, Universal Pictures and Focus Features announced that Hunnam would no longer portray the S&M-loving businessman who seduces Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) because of his "immersive TV schedule" as Jax in FX's "Sons of Anarchy."

The announcement was abrupt and came after a slew of fan backlash requesting other actors, especially Matt Bomer, to replace Hunnam. As a result, many questioned if a busy schedule was the true reason behind Hunnam's departure.

On Tuesday, Sagal, who plays Gemma Teller Morron on "Sons of Anarchy," appeared on "Watch What Happens Live" backing up her cast mate.

"Charlie is a very private guy, and even though we work on a TV show together, we don't work every day together," Sagal said. "So I haven't really spoken with him that much about it. My feeling is schedule definitely has a part to play in it, and I'm sure he had very good reasons for why he is not in that movie. I know he was doing another film right after that one. It was very backed up, so I would believe him."

Sagal also made her best guess about what's under Hunnam's pants.

"Ohhhh, wow," she said. "That's a good question. I'm gonna say boxers."

Despite rumors that Hunnam left the film because he could not handle the pressure or because he wanted more creative control, a busy schedule could have some validity. In May, Hunnam's father, Billy, died, which required the actor to return to England to be with his family. He is also filming his last season of "Sons of Anarchy."

"Like I said, I've got some family stuff I have to tend to," Hunnam said in his first interview since quitting the movie. "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.'"

Jamie Dornan replaced Hunnam as Christian Grey. Filming for Fifty Shades of Grey begins Dec. 2. Its original Aug. 1, 2014 release date is in question.

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