Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson on the cover of Entertainment Weekly
Frank Ockenfels for Entertainment Weekly
11/13/2013 AT 09:40 AM EST
Oh, the ties that bind.
Production is ramping up on the highly anticipated movie version of the erotic literary saga Fifty Shades of Grey
, and now eager fans can get a glimpse of the two actors who'll go toe-to-toe (or rather, bondage-to-bondage) as its sexy, hot-and-heavy leads: Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson.
In the latest issue of Entertainment Weekly
, the two stars get into character as Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele – with the help of a poor, unassuming silk tie.
"There was a slight fear," Dornan, 31, tells the magazine about taking on the role of the kinky lothario. "But beyond anything else, I was really f–––ing excited."
Apparently, filming the saga's steamy sex scenes don't faze him one bit. "I'm a fairly worldly guy,” says Dornan, who took over the role of Christian Grey after Charlie Hunnam dropped out
in October. “I grew up in a very liberal place. I’m not saying we had a playroom, but I’m not shocked by the sex in the book. It’s essential to tell the story. I can’t believe films that don’t invoke the sexual side of it. So it works for me.”
For her part, Johnson, 24, was more concerned about making a splash au naturel.
“Obviously, I want to look good naked,” the actress, who recently went brunette for the part, says. “I totally understand now why people exercise, because it kind of f––ing feels awesome.”
Fifty Shades of Grey
, which was originally scheduled to hit theaters in August 2014, has now been pushed back to Feb. 14, 2015.