UPDATE: It's been some time since we've speculated about who should nab the much-coveted role of Christian Grey (since summer, in fact), but that doesn’t mean we forgot about the 50 Shades of Grey bad boy (or that the sultry novel has lost any steam). After all, dreaming up the perfect cast has become pretty darn addictive, especially since author E.L. James still remains tight-lipped about her ideal lineup. To keep the guessing game going, we added 11 more guys to the list who could step into the undoubtedly big shoes of Mr. Grey. This story was originally posted on August 3.
While not all of us are Fifty Shades fans (or enthusiastic about the 50+ businesses piggy-backing on the book's popularity), that doesn't mean we don't a) like the open discussion about sexuality the book is bringing about and b) love imagining what actors will play the fictional characters. In fact, we can't help ourselves from weighing in on the role that almost all of America is talking about.
So, to indulge in a little TGIF procrastinating of the smokeshow kind, we break down the choice contenders, dividing our dudes into three sections: those who are being bandied about as possibilities, but won't do it; the actors we would love to see as CG (but aren't as likely to be cast), and the safe bets for both the studios and the fans.
Do you agree with picks? Regardless, you've got to admit: This lineup of potential Christian Greys certainly aren't too hard on the eyes, right?
WON'T — Ryan Gosling
We can't tell if he is actually being considered, or if his fans just want to see him having lots of sex. The hottie's predilection toward indie roles and his fear of franchises makes him unlikely to take the bait.
Photo: Courtesy of Sony
WON'T — Michael Fassbender
While we know Michael Fassbender's got the whole "package" (and his on-screen intensity is at Christian Grey-levels), the actor is simply too old to play the 27-year-old character. Nuts, we say. Nuts.
Photo: Ian Gavan/Getty Images For The BFI
WON'T — Robert Pattinson
Fifty Shades has its roots in Twilight fan fiction, and we are guessing R. Patz is trying to get as far away from that role as possible.
Photo: Courtesy of Cosmopolis
WON’T — Gabriel Macht
The Suits front man isn’t the first name that comes to mind for the role, but Macht certainly has the corporate thing down pat. We’re pretty willing to look past the fact that at 40, he may be a bit old to play the 27-year-old Grey, but the casting director may not.
Photo: Courtesy of USA
WON’T — Michael Trevino
Trevino got his start as a Disney star (and he’s dating Glee actress Jenna Ushkowitz), but the 27-year-old Vampire Diaries actor endorses an underwear brand, so he’s probably okay with a little nudity. He’s some nice eye candy and all, but we just don’t see BDSM (or hit Blockbuster) in him.
Photo: Courtesy of CW
WON’T — Hrithik Roshan
The 38-year-old Indian actor hasn’t seen much American playtime, but physically, he fits the bill for Christian Grey: Tall-dark-and-handsome. We’re just not sure he’ll make the switch from Bollywood.
Photo: Courtesy of FilmKraft
WON’T — Channing Tatum
He’s been crowned People's Sexiest Man Alive, but after Magic Mike, he may not want to be typecast as an ultra-provocative, muscle-baring type (though that doesn’t sound half-bad). In the end, he’s just not as magnetic as we imagined Grey.
Photo: Via Scott Garfield
WON'T — Henry Cavill
He has the looks. He has the body. But, he doesn't have the time. With the Superman reboot, we doubt Henry will be up for a sex romp. He's got a Man of Steel reputation to polish.
Photo: Jason Merritt/Getty Images for Relativity Media
WISH — Tom Hardy
We’ve been dreaming of Tom Hardy long before he starred as the oh-so-handsome conman in Inception. But the English Star Trek actor just signed on to star as a special operative in Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell, so he may be a tad busy. That doesn’t mean our fingers aren’t crossed.
Photo: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox
WISH — Max Irons
Okay, Max Irons might be a little young, but the son of Jeremy sure knows how to smolder. And, that might be enough for us.
Photo: Courtesy of Mango
WISH — Charlie Hunnam
He first caught our eye as Queer as Folk‘s Nathan Maloney back in 2000, but now he plays tattooed outlaw Jax Teller in Sons of Anarchy. Hunnam may not look dark and stormy, but he certainly has the intimidation factor. And, it doesn’t hurt that he’s the closest to a 20-something Brad Pitt we’ll ever get.
Photo: Courtesy of FX
WISH — Chace Crawford
As far as script-reading speculation goes, the Gossip Girl actor was recently added to the list of Christian Grey hopefuls, and we can totally imagine Chace channeling his wealthy Upper West-Side character Nate Archibald for the role. Plus, those blue eyes! But, is he tough enough?
Photo: Courtesy of CW
WISH — Riz Ahmed
After Trishna, this rugged actor stole our hearts and our breath. Sure, Christian isn't supposed to be British/Pakistani (and it might turn into another Rue-like scandal), but a left-field curveball might be exactly what this franchise needs.
Photo: Courtesy of Mongrel Media
WISH — Johannes Huebl
We doubt anyone else has thrown his name in the ring, but the German model (and Olivia Palermo’s better half) is painfully beautiful. As far as his acting resume goes, though, he’s dabbled with a…. YouTube video. Not exactly extensive, but he plays the sex object of a few desperate Upper East Side moms. We could maybe see him dominate the screen.
Photo: Courtesy of Models1
WISH — Ian Somerhalder
Ian is exactly what we imagine Christian Grey to be: slightly mysterious, gorgeous, and with piercing eyes and chiseled good looks. But, he doesn't have the right kind of pull: He isn't indie enough to be a shocker or mainstream enough to have blockbuster power. Bummer.
Photo: Courtesy of Bitter Productions
WISH — Armie Hammer
He's so smug. He's so handsome. And he's got the acting chops. (See: The Social Network.) We just worry that Hollywood execs won't see him as anything but the Brothers Winklevoss.
Photo: Courtesy of Snow White Productions
WILL — Chris Pine
Chris Pine is a proven box-office success and open to franchises (Star Trek). He might be too much of an all-American face for Grey fans, but the studios will love him.
Photo: Andreas Rentz/Getty Images
WILL — Cam Gigandet
A quiet underdog, the soap-actor-turned-O.C. star is on our radar because of his silver screen performances in Twilight and Burlesque. After all, he did play a convincing sadistic vampire.
Photo: Via Jaimie Trueblood
WILL — Alex Pettyfer
Thanks to Magic Mike, we know that Alex Pettyfer isn't afraid of getting a little nakey. And, he's got the on-screen hunk appeal. He seems like a safe bet for all involved, though we're not 1000% sold on his acting chops.
Photo: Courtesy of Sony
WILL — Alexander Skarsgård
We know that Alexander has no problem acting sans
clothing, but the actor seems to actually covet the part
. If Bret Easton Ellis gets to pen the screenplay (OMG), he'll want Alex for his main dude.
Photo: Via Steve Dietl
WILL — Matt Bomer
Here is an example of a rumor gaining so much traction it might become reality: It sounds more and more likely that Bomer might get the part. And, with this fan-made video
? We're sold. How perfect would he be?
Photo: Courtesy of TNT
WILL — Richard Madden
50 Shades is going to be a huge hit no matter who’s cast, and this would be Madden’s first big-time movie role after starring as Robb Stark on Game of Throne . We imagine he’d jump at the chance to play bad boy Grey (and we’d welcome it!).
Photo: Courtesy of Channel4
WILL — Chris Hemsworth
Standing at a massive 6’4, the 29-year-old blue-eyed actor embodies the Christian Grey physique to a tee. And with movies like Star Trek, Thor, and Snow White & The Huntsman under his belt, it certainly doesn’t hurt that he’s a Blockbuster magnet.
Photo: Courtesy of Marvel