Universal Pictures and Focus Features have officially announced that Dakota Johnson and Charlie Hunnam have been cast in the lead roles as Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey in the upcoming film adaptation of the E L James’ bestseller novel Fifty Shades of Grey to be released August 1, 2014.
Dakota Johnson’s first notable screen role was in the multi-Academy Award-winning 2010 feature The Social Network. Her subsequent movies include the upcoming feature Need for Speed, 21 Jump Street, and The Five-Year Engagement. She also starred as Kate in the comedy series Ben and Kate.
Charlie Hunnam currently stars as a regular on the critically acclaimed FX series Sons of Anarchy. His feature film credits include Pacific Rim, Children of Men, Cold Mountain, and Nicholas Nickleby.
Universal Pictures and Focus Features acquired the rights to the three books in the “Fifty Shades of Grey” trilogy in March 2012. Focus Features will market and distribute the first film in partnership with Universal.
Fifty Shades of Grey has become a global phenomenon and the trilogy has been translated in 50 languages worldwide since its release. To date, the “Fifty Shades” trilogy has sold over 70 million copies worldwide in e-book and print, making it one of the fastest-selling book series ever.
Set in modern-day Seattle, Fifty Shades of Grey follows the BDSM relationship of 27-year-old billionaire Christian Grey and college student Anastasia Steele. Subsequent novels in the series, “Fifty Shades Darker” and “Fifty Shades Freed,” explore the couple’s deepening relationship.