'King Arthur: Legend Of The Sword' Director Guy Ritchie Reveals Charlie Hunnam Won The Role 'The Old-Fashioned Route'

It's been long in development, but Charlie Hunnam is finally set to appear as Guy Ritchie's newly envisioned King Arthur. King Arthur: Legend of the Sword is scheduled to premiere in May after several delays and rescheduling. How did Hunnam land the iconic role?

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Ritchie explained how Hunnam won the role of a young Arthur. While Ritchie admitted that Hunnam wasn't on his radar for the part, he revealed that Hunnam got the role the "old-fashioned" way.

"To be fair to Charlie, Charlie won the role because he paid for his own flight. I wasn't even thinking about Charlie. He wanted to be screen tested, and he won it, as did Astrid [Berges-Frisby]. They won it through the good, old-fashioned route."
Part of the reason Hunnam got the role was because he understood Ritchie's vision for the character. The acclaimed director wanted an actor who could get on board with whatever he needed without asking too many questions.

"I need someone who was going to understand my vision and have a similar disposition. I needed to realize that we were going to be on the same page, so that anything I said was going to mean something to him," Ritchie explained. "I needed him to trust me. Those things were conspicuous in Charlie."

Charlie Hunnam as King Arthur in 'Legend of the Sword.' [Image by Warner Bros.]

Ritchie's King Arthur: Legend of the Sword is a different version of the legendary story than anything we've seen before. Not only does Ritchie incorporate fantasy elements within the story, but Arthur isn't the typical good guy. Hunnam's Arthur is gritty, street-wise, and unafraid to get dirty, something Ritchie believes makes him a likable character.

"His intelligent humanity, I'd say. He knows how to straddle the line between being hungry without being corrupted by that hunger," Ritchie said.

"At the same time, there's no version of him being squeaky clean. He has to get on with it. You have to move forward. As momentum takes you forward, he picks up the least amount of dirt, as elegantly as one could hope to do in his ascension. So really it's a question of, you're going to get dirty, but can you elegantly negotiate with that filth? Life is a dirty business. Can you remain dignified during the process of life?"
Of course, the movie hasn't been without a few hiccups. The release date has been moved and shifted several times over the past year because producers wanted to give the movie a fighting chance on the market.

"The date kept shifting, I think, simply because of competition," Ritchie explained. "But it's such a crowded market out there, trying to find a weekend that you stand half a chance in is tough. That's the only reason."

With the premiere a few months away, Bleeding Cool is reporting that Ritchie just released a new poster for the film. The image shows Hunnam as King Arthur with the text, "From Nothing Comes A King."

'King Arthur: Legend of the Sword' official poster. [Image by Warner Bros.]

The poster art comes on the heels of a new trailer. According to Deadline, the clip proves that King Arthur is more stylish and action-packed than previous renditions. The trailer opens with Hunnam narrating, "I am here now because of you - you created me." It isn't clear who Hunnam is talking to, but that mystery will be solved when the film hits theaters in May.

Apart from Hunnam, the movie stars Jude Law as the main villain. Rounding out the cast are, Astrid Berges-Frisbey, Djimon Hounsou, Eric Bana, and Aidan Gillen. Ritchie helmed the project while Joby Harold, Ritchie, and Lionel Wigram wrote the screenplay. Producers included Akiva Goldsman, Tory Tunnell, Joby Harold, Steve Clark-Hall, Wigram and Ritchie.

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword opens in theaters everywhere on May 12. Check out the latest teaser trailer below.

[Featured Image by Warner Bros.]