Actress Dakota Johnson has taken on an active role in helping producers find the perfect star to portray her onscreen lover in the Fifty Shades Of Grey film following Charlie Hunnam's recent departure.

The Sons of Anarchy star pulled out of playing Christian Grey in the big screen adaptation of writer E.L. James' erotic novel earlier this month (Oct13), leaving Universal Pictures bosses scrambling to recast his role.

However, producer Michael De Luca reveals they've been receiving a helping hand from Johnson, the daughter of Hollywood veterans Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson, as they search for a suitable replacement to appear opposite her Anastasia Steele.

He tells, "She's the best partner a producer could have... She's helping us look through the candidates to see which chemistry kind of captures our attention."

Hunnam recently revealed his hectic Tv schedule forced him to walk away from the project, and while De Luca admits losing their original leading man was a big blow, he insists production is "on track" as they are close to revealing their new Christian Grey "in a couple weeks".

British actor Jamie Dornan and Alexander Skarsgard have emerged as frontrunners, while Ian Somerhalder and Matt Bomer remain fan favourites for the role.