Before there was Katniss Everdeen, in full ensemble as the girl on fire, there was Jennifer Lawrence: A precocious young actress cast to play a compassionate killer and futuristic heroine who stands for revolution and hope in The Hunger Games.
Before there was Edward Cullen, pale and brooding as a romantic, stalkerish vampire, there was Robert Pattinson, otherwise known as Cedric Diggory- the handsome, sweet Hufflepuff who tragically dies during the Triwizard Tournament in Harry Potter.
Neither cast announcement was received favorably, but the backlash to Focus Features' choices for the lead roles in the film adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey has been so hefty, that it's actually sparked an online petition.
On Monday, author E.L. James announced Charlie Hunnam and Dakota Johnson will play Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele. Fans initially expressed their disappointment via social media, leading producer Dana Brunetti to address the outraged thousand with the following message:
"There is a lot that goes into casting that isn't just looks. Talent, availability, their desire to do it, chemistry with other actor, etc.," he said.
"So if your favorite wasn't cast, then it is most likely due to something on that list. Keep that in mind while hating and keep perspective."
Fans then created a petition on Change.org titled, "We want Matt Bomer and Alexis Bledel as Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele: We want Matt and Alexis on 50 Shades." As of Tuesday afternoon, over 7,500 supporters have signed the petition.
The point of this post is that before Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele were materialized into a huge Hollywood production, two lesser-known actors were hand-selected and given the unprecedented opportunity (or would it be, burden?) of bringing to life, two glorified, fictional characters. If Hunnam and Johnson play it right, their acting careers and certainly their futures could be set.
Fans might just find that Hunnam is the perfect fit for the lead role. Just like Twi-hards learned to accept and adore R. Patz for his quirky charm and poetic qualities.
Pattinson, by the way, was allegedly James' first choice to play Christian Grey. "She has always been obsessed with him," a source told E! News. Luckily, James can be consoled by this video of Pattinson starring in Dior Homme's fall/winter 2013 ad campaign.