Don’t expect Hunnam to spend much time on a motorcycle in his first series regular role since the biker drama.
EW.com — Charlie Hunnam knows what you’re thinking about the first photo Apple released last month from his new series Shantaram. In the image, the Sons of Anarchy alum sits perched on a motorcycle, looking very much like his former role as outlaw motorcycle club member Jax Teller on the FX drama. But Hunnam’s new character, fugitive Lin Ford, is nothing like Jax. And Shantaram is nothing like Sons of Anarchy.
“I thought that was very cheeky that Apple released that image as the first image,” Hunnam tells EW with a laugh. “I’m on a motorcycle in the show for approximately two minutes maximum over the course of 12 hours, so I hope people don’t get too excited thinking that this is some sort of Sons of Anarchy in India, because that’s not what we’re delivering. The show is so radically different and the characters are so radically different.”
Hunnam stars in the adaptation of the 2003 international best-selling novel from Australian author Gregory David Roberts about Lin’s adventures in 1980s Bombay after escaping prison. Alone in an unfamiliar city, he falls for an enigmatic and intriguing woman while on the run from his past, and soon must choose between freedom or love, and the complications that come with it.
Shantaram marks Hunnam’s first series regular TV gig since Sons of Anarchy wrapped in 2014, and he’s excited to begin this next phase of his career. “I was really a kid when I started Sons, although that grew into feeling quite proud of some of the work that I did in the later seasons,” he says. “I’m just a different person now. I’m north of 40 now, and I’ve been taking stock of who I am and who I would like to be, and the work that I do is certainly an element of that. I think it was an important step for me to challenge myself in those ways. It was very rewarding to push myself out of my comfort zone with this project — I’ve never worked as hard on anything as I’ve worked on this, so I’m nervous and just really excited to see what the reaction will be.”
Credit: Roland Neveu/Apple TV+
Choosing his first post-Sons series regular role was a big decision, and it’s one that he didn’t take lightly. “I very much enjoy the process of long-form storytelling and the consistency of working with the same cast and the opportunity to play the same character for a long period of time, but when I finished Sons of Anarchy, I needed a break from the rigor of that routine, because it’s pretty arduous shooting television,” he says. “I wanted also to wait until the right thing came along, because it’s such a big commitment. It was in my mind, certainly, to make a return to television if I had the opportunity.”
Continue reading Press: Charlie Hunnam promises his new series ‘Shantaram’ is “radically different” from ‘Sons of Anarchy’