He looks good shirtless. Check.
He's got some acting chops. Check.
The 31-year-old Irish actor-model inspired mostly positive reactions on social media when word hit on Wednesday night that he will replace the fan-hated Charlie Hunnam as the leading man in the upcoming film adaptation of E. L. James's popular novel "Fifty Shades of Grey."
Virtual squeals — and some sighs — were heard around the world.
Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey....OH MY GOSH YES!!!! Perfect!
— Ashley Brennan (@Asherpants) October 24, 2013
v happy that they cast #1 british cutie jamie dornan as christian grey. — Sophie (@Spazophie) October 24, 2013
Celebs were into the new Christian Grey as well.
I'm a monstrous @JamieDornan1 fan. Wasn't allowed to be attracted to him on The Fall bc he played a sexmurderer. 50 Shades is my big chance!— Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) October 24, 2013
I think that Jamie Dornan is the perfect choice to play Christian Grey in FIFTY SHADES OF GREY. Smartest casting decision in a long time.— Bret Easton Ellis (@BretEastonEllis) October 24, 2013
"Fifty" author E.L. James weighed in, too.
While we know Dornan wasn't necessarily at the top of fans' lists for the gig, the reaction is certainly more positive than when Hunnam was announced for the role. In fact, "Fifty Shades" die-hards were so outraged at the time that they rallied together and even got a petition started urging the studio to oust the "Sons of Anarchy" actor.
[Related: 7 Things You Need to Know About Jamie Dornan]
Now, even those who were holding out hope (even though it was hopeless) to see blue-eyed babes Matt Bomer or Ian Somerhalder fill Grey's perfectly-polished shoes seem to be accepting of Dornan.
Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey. Hmm he's okay but I was still hoping for Matt Bomer tho — Jabe Daud (@jaaaaabe) October 24, 2013
@jelenaajelicc I wish it was Ian somerholder instead but O WELL HE CUTE
— Marija Milas (@marijamilas) October 24, 2013
Yahoo Movies's own Facebook post on the news elicited nearly 2,500 likes in two hours, reflecting a strong response in Dornan's favor. "Way better than the first choice," wrote Ann Willard-Lamere, throwing a little sand at Hunnam — who quit just a few weeks after accepting the much-discussed role.
Joe Mee offered a moment of levity over the casting craze with, "Why didn't they choose Gilbert Gottfried?"
But Dornan is a far cry from the squinty comedian, having toured with a band, modeled for Calvin Klein (with both Eva Mendes and Kate Moss!), dated Keira Knightley, and is most well known as Sheriff Graham Humbert (the Huntsman) on ABC's "Once Upon a Time." Dornan was born in the town of Holywood (just one letter off!) in Northern Ireland and played rugby during his college days in Belfast.
It remains to be seen whether the buzzy role as the accomplished businessman with a penchant for sexual role-play in "Fifty Shades" will do wonders for Dornan's career. Fan Ashley Renz expressed her worry on Facebook: "I love him! WHY WOULD YOU RUIN YOUR CAREER OVER THIS."
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