After more than a year of rumors, speculation and online fantasy casting, Charlie Hunnam was unveiled as the star of Fifty Shades of Grey in September.
Then he got cold feet. Despite the stock "scheduling conflicts" line, the consensus is that Hunnam bailed on Fifty Shades of Grey because of the attention.
Some fans were disappointed, but many were downright thrilled at the chance to re-cast the role they didn't feel Hunnam was a great fit for anyway.
The aftermath of the casting shakeup has led to other behind-the-scenes changes that are less public but still significant, as well as more questions.
So here's the latest on what's going on with the project since Charlie Hunnam's exit and what changes we can expect (and not expect) with him gone:
The next Christian. Obviously, this is the one on everyone's mind.
The short list, according to inside sources (not fans), includes Jamie Dornan of the U.K. series The Fall, and Alexander Skarsgard of True Blood.
The studio also is revisiting its initial list of possible contenders, such as Theo James and Christian Cooke. Jamie Dornan may have the edge.
Skarsgard, Irish actor Cillian Murphy, Matt Bomer and Ian Somerhalder are among the actors with the best odds to get the part according to bookmakers.
Expect a relative unknown. Hunnam bailed because he was worried about being typecast a la Robert Pattinson. An unknown will take that chance.
Anything could happen, but that's our take.
Dakota Johnson isn't going anywhere. Sources say she's "100 percent committed" to the part, despite the fact that "it's been tough" on her lately.
While she's had a hard time dealing with the press and the negative attention, rumors of Dakota Johnson leaving the project have been exaggerated.
She's calling the shots. So committed are the producers to Johnson that they're casting a man who has chemistry with her, not the other way around.
A new writer has been hired. Kelly Marcel's script is now in the hands of Patrick Marber to "do a polish and character work on the script," THR reports.
Universal claims it still on track for August. With the rewrites, turmoil and the search for Christian Grey back on, the whole thing reeks of delays.
Not yet, though. We're on for August 1, 2014 as of right now, assuming a new Christian can be signed in the next couple of weeks to start filming.
What do you think? Who should play Christian? And is Dakota a good enough fit as Anastasia Steele to anchor the casting for the new leading man?