Charlie Hunnam

Hollywood — Why all the hubbub over “50 Shades of Grey” casting? The book was a good read for women who needed a jolt to their sex lives. The fact that it borders on pornography seems to be what made it a best seller. Even before Charlie Hunnam was cast opposite Dakota Johnson, speculation was wild. Reporters assumed Charlie bowed out because hardcore fans of the book couldn’t see him as Christian Grey.

Inside sources have revealed that Charlie didn’t care about that; what he was concerned about was the script, which he felt was unplayable as it was. Charlie is also a writer, and he was submitting suggestions to producers on a regular basis. He wasn’t worried he couldn’t handle the role; he was concerned the screenplay as written would be a disappointment.

Universal Pictures told him — flat out — that he didn’t have script approval. Add to that the insult of a mere $125,000 paycheck for a major film of this size. Charlie, who starred in “Pacific Rim” (which cost $190 million and grossed $407.5 million), would have finished shooting “Sons of Anarchy” before starting “50 Shades.”

Now Dakota Johnson isn’t sure she wants to move forward unless the script is improved. At press time, all kinds of actors were named to replace Hunnam, among them “White Collar” star Matt Bomer. Bomer is hot and sexy enough for the role, but producers are worried an “out” actor might not be accepted as Christian Grey. “The Vampire Diaries” Ian Somerhalder and “True Blood’s” Alexander Skarsgard also were considered, as were newcomers Jamie Dornan, (of “Once Upon a Time”) and Christian Cooke (Mercutio in the just released “Romeo & Juliet”).

Sources say the dark horse is actually Ryan Gosling. It’s going to take a powerful actor, with smoldering looks and a hot body, to do Grey justice, and Gosling is all those things. But, if they thought Hunnam gave them grief over the script, imagine what Gosling, who writes, directs and acts, will do! Whoever wins the role will have to avoid 50 shades of embarrassment if he can’t pull it off