Despite fans of Fifty Shades of Grey expressing their disappointment with the decision to cast Charlie Hunnam and Dakota Johnson as Christian and Ana, author E.L. James and producer Dana Brunetti have actively come forward in supporting the actors in their roles.
While some fans can’t let go of their dream ensemble quite as easily as Ms. James (who supposedly wanted Robert Pattinson to play to elusive Mr. Gray), we’ve come to realize that the casting may not be ideal, but it isn’t a huge mistake either.
Here are 7 reasons why Charlie and Dakota could totally nail their roles!
1. He Had a Rough Childhood
Okay, so his upbringing was a little different and—hopefully—less damaging than that of the eponymous Mr. Grey, but Charlie still had a difficult time as a child.
In an interview with Stumped Magazine he spoke about how horrible his childhood was in his hometown of Newcastle, which he said is “comparable to downtown Detroit in reputation.”
Did we mention that Christian is from Detroit?
2. She Played an Undercover Cop in 21 Jump Street.
She already knows her way around handcuffs… need we say more?
3. He’s an Entrepreneur
Like his character—Christian Grey—Charlie Hunnam is more than just a pretty face; in addition to his acting career, Charlie has ventured into writing, having sold his first screenplay, Vlad, to Summit Entertainment.
4. She Knows a Thing (Or Two) About Method Acting
Dakota has played a few characters that are radically from her real life—for example, a sex-crazed hostess in The 5 Year Engagement or a young, single mom in Ben and Kate—so she’s formed a technique in channeling those very versatile characters.
“Sometimes I’ll have genres of music that go with a character, or go with a certain time in their life that I may be acting out,” she told Interview Magazine. “But it’s different every time, sometimes it’s just a really intuitive feeling, and sometimes it’s a lot of research—learning about things that this character loves that I know nothing about.”
5. He’s a Very Private Person
Just like the elusive Christian Grey, the 33-year-old Sons of Anarchy star enjoys his personal space. Recently, Charlie and his girlfriend ditched the Los Angeles and big city life in favor of a more intimate dwelling on a ranch.
6. She Isn’t Exactly Shy…
Not only did she play sex-crazed Audrey in The 5 Year Engagement (which meant a few sex scenes with Jason Segel), but she also appeared in only her underwear, alongside Justin Timberlake, in The Social Network.
7. He’s Mysterious and She’s Inexperienced
Fans seem disappointed that these stars aren’t more well known—while she isn’t a big enough name, he remains centered in mystery. But her naivety and his discretion are more than just familiar—they are just like Ana and Christian.