updated 10/17/2013 AT 11:00 AM ET
•originally published 10/17/2013 AT 2:00 PM ET
Charlie Hunnam just avoided the possibility of having to address his decision to drop out of Fifty Shades of Grey.
On Wednesday, the actor, 33, failed to make his first scheduled public appearance since the big casting shakeup was announced over the weekend.
Hunnam – who was set to play the erotic film’s lead role, Christian Grey – was slated to attend the Paley Center’s benefit gala honoring the FX network until the “last minute,” an event rep told PEOPLE, without providing any further explanation.
A few of Hunnam’s TV costars did show up at the Los Angeles bash, but avoided doing most interviews, including Katey Sagal, who performed two songs at the event with The Forest Rangers.
Still, a few folks managed to take dig at the Fifty Shades controversy. At one point, presenter Aisha Tyler complimented Hunnam and Sagal’s looks, just before her onstage cohort, Paul Scheer, said, “That’s the Fifty Shades I’d like to see!”
Fellow Anarchy cast mate CCH Pounder told PEOPLE at the event, “I had some very intimate scenes with him in the last week, and [his plans to drop out of the project were] never brought up. He’s fully concentrated on what he’s doing now.”
Although not spotted publicly in recent days, Hunnam was photographed at a pal’s wedding the day the news broke. He served as best man, kept close company with his girlfriend and seemed in good spirits.