HELLO! has been finding out all about one of the UK's sexiest exports, an actor who evokes memories of Heath Ledger with his mix of rugged masculine grace and creative sensitivity.
Take a look at our ten facts to find out why he should be a sensation in the role opposite Dakota Johnson.
- Charlie was born in Newcastle to a "tough guy father" and "bohemian mother" as he describes them, moving to the Lake District when he was 12.
- He was talent spotted on Christmas Eve during a shoe shopping expedition for his younger brother by a production manager for Byker Grove. The budding actor went on to be cast in three episodes of the children's show.
- His first major role came at age 18, when he was cast in the British TV series Queer As Folk. He appeared in 10 episodes, playing a gay teen, before moving to Los Angeles.
- He owns 82 pair of trainers.
- In 1999, when he was 20 he met actress Katharine Towne at an audition for Dawson's Creek. Within four weeks they had eloped to Las Vegas.The marriage last four years. His ex-wife is the daughter of one of Tinseltown's premiere screenwriters Robert Towne. "Her father is like Hollywood royalty, so I have to admit that it did get me noticed," he said of the relationship.
- Since 2007, he has been in a relationship with jewellery designer Morgana McNelis. The couple live on a ranch outside LA, where they have have 30 chickens, a couple of donkeys and ducks. "We are going to try to live more sustainably," explained the actor when they moved there earlier this year.
- The lead role in Fifty Shades requires him to be dark, dangerous, dominant and above all supremely sexy. Anyone who doubts whether he can pull it off should listen to the man himself. "I've been swaggering since I was 14 years old!" he told an interviewer earlier this year.
- His chiselled physique comes from boxing, swimming and weightlifting.
- Charlie has been burgled twice, once at 11am when he confronted the intruder with a baseball bat and another time at 3am when he grabbed an old machete.
- Having moved to the US so early, he has a cute mid-Atlantic accent that has shades of Geordie mixed with California surfer dude.