Hunnam's Jax Teller could not be more different than his naughty "Fifthy Shades of Grey" character, but his friends on the show are behind him all the way.
"When he told me that it was happening or that he was considering it I just howled," said Maggie Siff, who plays Hunnam's on-screen wife, Tara. "I mean I think we all did. We’re all like, what?”
“And then I talked to him seriously about it," Siff continued. "I think he’s very brave to do it. He doesn’t do anything unless he feels it deep down. He’s not going to do something because all of his agents are telling him to do something. That’s what makes me think it stands a chance of being really, really great. If he has that conviction going in, then you know it’ll be great."
Katey Sagal, who plays Jax's mother Gemma, agreed.
“I’m really proud of him,” she said. “The choice was not an obvious one for him. But for good or bad, he will throw himself 100 percent in. I don’t know if I want to see all that, but maybe."
"Sons of Anarchy" creator Kurt Sutter said the choice to tackle the role reflected who Hunnam is as an actor.
"We're thrilled for Charlie," Sutter said. "He works hard, constantly challenges himself and his craft. He is a star, in all the right ways."
Hunnam himself acknowledges that he wasn't the obvious choice for Grey, but took the resulting dust up over his selection in stride.
“There are so many fans of that book and I know that on the surface, I’m probably not what everybody imagined,” he said. “Because reading is so personal and people bring a character to life in their imagination, they feel ownership over that character. That’s daunting if I allowed myself to think about it too much."
"I’m taking it very seriously and intend to explore the nature of who this character is, what motivates him -- and also dress up nice and look good in those suits.”
"Fifty Shades of Grey" is slated for an Aug. 1, 2014 release, and will star Dakota Johnson opposite Hunnam.