50 SHADES OF GREY: The Good, The Bad And Just Plain Awful Casting Suggestions

50 shades

Photo: Vintage

Here’s the deal. There’s a lot of talk going around about the ever-popular, naughty BDSM 50 Shades of Grey series by E.L. James.(And, no, we’re not calling it “mummy Porn,” it’s really “Twilight” on sex-crazed steroids, minus the fangs. It even keeps the biting in tact.) 

Confused? Get the skinny on the book here

Everyone from EW to Vanity Fair is weighing in on who should cast the 27-year-old billionaire sex God, Christian Grey, and his inexperienced mistress, Anastasia Steele, in Universal’s film adaptation. However, we’re convinced half these sites haven’t even read the books to make a judgment call to cast the perfect pair to indulge in blissful tom-foolery.

While some suggestions have garnered eyebrow raising and chuckles (Armie Hammer?), others have been spot on. We’re not spoiling (*Cough* Ian Scalding-smolder … we mean Somerhalder *Cough*).

The lead roles have been a no-brainer to us since the start. 

Let’s settle this once and for all. 

Bad Idea: Amanda Seyfried

Who would have imagined the lascivious Miss Seyfried had such somber roots on daytime television? Sure, she may have played the naive, nerdy wholesome virgin for a time on ABC's 'All My Children'; however, her days as a sweet, innocent girl are long over. Have you checked out any of Seyfried's latest flicks? ('Red Riding Hood,' 'Chloe') The actress emanates sex. She's playing the titular role in the Linda Lovelace biopic.

We're not denying a sensuous desire and hunger in Anastasia; however, there's a bit more to her than being a lustful harlot.

Check out 'Chloe,' where Seyfried makes moves on both Liam Neeson and Julianne Moore, and you'll see what we mean.

The title of crazed carnal goddess belongs to half of Ana's character, not the entirety.

Bad Idea: Lindsay Lohan

Yes, Lindsay Lohan is attempting to make her comeback, just landing the role of Elizabeth Taylor in a Lifetime film; however, she's an unpredictable loose cannon.

Also, like Seyfried, there's too much of a focus on the sexuality of the star. There's no shred of naivety left in Lohan, a necessity for the perfect Anastasia Steele. Perhaps, if this was post 'Mean Girls,' it would be one thing; however, this is post Playboy spread and 'Machete.' Pass.

Bad Idea: Dakota Fanning

Dakota Fanning JUST became legal. She still looks nowhere near 21. Marc Jacobs came under fire last November for these raunchy perfume ads with the young actress. Since she's been out of the spotlight for a few years, it's difficult to accept her as more than a child in films.

Onscreen, she's like your little sister. That and there's something overtly creepy about watching Fanning get it on with any older man.

Our verdict: No amount of maturity in this young actress makes up for her actual age in years. She could still play a high school student. We're looking for post-college grad.

Good Idea: Elizabeth Olsen

We like Elizabeth Olsen a lot. She's making a name for herself with leads in 'Martha Marcy May Marlene' (try saying that five times fast) and recently starring in thriller 'Silent House.' She's a solid lead; however, this just isn't the role for her.

We know she can play an innocent corrupted youth a la 'MMMM'; however, we're not convinced she can make the balance as an equal seductive and sultry mistress.

Plus, the other Olsen sister has plenty of time on the big screen coming her way. With two more films out this year and at least three more films in the pipeline for the one next, we're not worried about this rising star. She can do better than an adaptation of a sex-filled book craze.

Good Idea: Shailene Woodley

The bubbly young star has everything going for her--she's part of a hit show on ABC Family and was nominated for a Golden Globe for her role in last year's 'The Descendants.' So why wouldn't she be the perfect fit for Ana?

She may play a mother onscreen; however, the actress comes across as slightly too naive for the part.

Her teen roles make us question whether she can handle a more adult character. She's nearly the right age for the role, and we could easily imagine Woodley stumbling face forward into Grey's office upon their first meeting. And, while she would perfectly master all of the nerving initial meetings with the billionaire playboy, once things start to get serious in the 'red room of pain' (aka the sex room), it will get as awkward as an episode of 'The Secret Life of the American Teenager.'

We were sold on Woodley for a while, but there was one other star who stood out.

Winner: Felicity Jones

Shocked? You shouldn't be.

Felicity Jones exhibits the plump, full lips. long brown hair that constantly needs to be tucked behind her ear and simple beauty.

You may not know Felicity Jones yet, but you will. The English actress most recently starred in 2011's 'Like Crazy.'

After seeing her onscreen, Jones would offer the perfect split between sensual and sensitive.

She once chopped off all her hair, so we're pretty sure that spunk could deliver the smart mouth necessary to speak her mind without shying away from the shrewd, intimidating billionaire.

Sure, she's 28; however, she could pull off the younger look. Plus, we're sure if she bit her lip we'd stop in our tracks, too.

Watch the trailer for 'Like Crazy' and tell us she hasn't won you over, especially when she's tearful.

Bad Idea: Christian Bale

Seriously, Batman cannot be our 50 shades of wicked pleasure. Bale has solidified himself as Gotham's wealthiest Dark Knight since 'Batman Begins' in 2005.

Sure, Christian Bale will hang up his cape come the end of summer; however, we could use a new face on the big screen. We can't have one actor monopolize brood, dark and alluring.

He can do disturbed and he can do 'psycho,' but Bale does not do whimsically charming. We need a knight in shining armour who can do both while appearing to be 27. We hate to break it to you, but Bale's a little old.

Bad Idea: Mark Ruffalo

The casting of Mark Ruffalo as Christian Grey would bring new meaning to 'Hulk Smash' that we don't even want to fathom. Too late.

Ruffalo's charming on screen--too charming, though. We see Ruffalo and we think fun, easy-going dad. Maybe even cool uncle, but passionate brooding, conceited egotistical lover? Not a chance.

Another problem: At 44, Ruffalo's not going to be packing the much-needed chiseled body of a sleek young demigod.

Bad Idea: Ryan Gosling

We get it. He's an actual real-life superhero. Plus, Ryan Gosling can play the bad boy ('Drive'), a meticulous, no-nonsense man in charge ('Ides of March') and a downright softy ('The Notebook').

On paper, there's no doubt in our minds that Gosling has the ability to offer 50 shades of something … but while reading the page-turner, we're not convinced. He just seems above the whole childish tween nonsense. In book two, Grey gets overly sappy and basically bends over backwards at Ana's every whim. That's not Gosling's style.

At the end of the day, Gosling has his own romance flick. And, we just can't picture sweet, loving Noah from Nicholas Spark's 'The Notebook,' handcuffing women to a four-poster bed or bending them over a brown leather bridle to flog them in a red room of pain, especially after playing Superman. It just doesn't seem believable.

Give someone else a chance in the limelight.

Bad Idea: Armie Hammer

The Winklevoss twin?

Yes, we loved Hammer in 'The Social Network': he's handsome, he's likable. However, there needs to be more than looks for the role.

We have no doubt of his intensity--he ripped a doorknob off a Harvard door. However, romantically, Hammer mirrors the charisma of a Jason Segel type. He'd work great for a romantic comedy, an erotic love story bordering on the edge of porn? Hammer's previous roles ('Mirror, Mirror,' 'The Social Network') have been a bit too G-rated to meet the 50 Shades standards.

Hammer also seems slightly too broad shouldered for the slim executive. His low bass voice is also a smidge too low-pitched for the perfect Grey.

Good Idea: Alexander Skarsgard

On the other hand, we're thinking Alexander Skarsgard is a little too much BDSM, and not enough 'hearts and flowers' as the leads in 50 Shades often joke about.

Yes, we've seen a softer side to Skarsgard on the last season of 'True Blood' when notorious baddie Eric loses his memory and transforms into a lost puppy in Sookie's (Anna Paquin) arms.

However, anytime he's onscreen the man oozes sex, which is great, but its slightly domineering. He's like the yin to Amanda Seyfried's yang.

Also, the role calls for a guy with dark hair, and we couldn't imagine Skarsgard dying his golden locks.

Winner: Ian Somerhalder

From 'Lost' to 'The Vampire Diaries' the model-turned-actor has showed versatility as both an over-protective older brother (this will come into play in book two, 50 Shades Darker) and as a vampire bad boy with a gentler side.

His ability to transform from malevolent bloodthirsty vampire to offering a glimpse at a kinder interior directly parallels to Christian Grey's transformation.

Both are traits important for the mercurial, control freak executive of a multi-billion dollar empire.

Some have voted him out saying Somerhalder's not enough of a box-office draw.

'Harry Potter,' 'The Hunger Games' and 'Twilight' all started off with actors, who for the most part, weren't known before landing their breakout blockbuster roles.

Reading the books, it's easy to place him meandering onscreen with hand through disheveled hair, giving demands to staff one moment while throwing down in a heated flame of passion the next.

We're not sure of anyone else who can jump between two extremes, but we're betting on Somehalder. His interest in the role seals the deal.

Plus, there's that scalding smolder. Yes, our inner goddesses are reeling. This role was made for Somerhalder.

Here are our winning picks for Christian Grey and Ana Steele: Felicity Jones and Ian Somerhalder. Do you agree?

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