Mark Wahlberg has revealed he fought to secure the film rights for erotic bestseller Fifty Shades Of Grey and almost fired his agent when the deal fell through.

The Fighter star had hoped to produce the movie adaptation of E.L. James' popular novel but lost out to Michael De Luca.

Both men took part in a recent producers' roundtable chat for The Hollywood Reporter, which prompted Wahlberg to recount his high hopes for the film.

He said, "I almost fired my agent, Ari, over (it) - not because I wanted to play the part. We were aware of the book very early on, and we were close to securing the rights, and then we get into this bidding war. We were so close to having (it)..."

De Luca, who recently locked in the cast after hiring Jamie Dornan to replace Sons of Anarchy star Charlie Hunnam as Christian Grey, joked Wahlberg would have made a good leading man in the film, stating, "He (Grey) looks a lot like Mark Wahlberg. I mean, the woman wrote a fantasy: a square-jawed, tall, broad-shouldered, genius, billionaire Adonis..."

The comparison prompted Wahlberg to respond, "Sounds like Brad Pitt to me."

Sam Taylor-Johnson will direct the film, which is scheduled to hit cinemas in 2015.