|Idris Elba Quick Info|
|Height||6 ft 2¾ in|
|Date of Birth||September 6, 1972|
Idris Elba is an actor, film producer, musician, and DJ from England who has been seen in the HBO series The Wire, BBC One series Luther, etc. He played Nelson Mandela in the biopic Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (2013). He also won the “Rear of the Year” male title in 2017 in Britain. He released his first mixtape “Merry DriisMas Holiday Mixtape” in 2011. He has over 3 millions followers on Twitter and Instagram each.
Idrissa Akuna Elba
Idris, DJ Big Driis, Big Driis, 7 Dub, Big Driis the Londoner
Hackney, London, England
He divides his time between New York and Los Angeles in the United States.
Idris attended Kingsland High School and then went to Barking and Dagenham College in London to study drama.
However, he left school in 1988 and joined the National Youth Music Theatre with the help of a grant of £1,500 from the Prince’s Trust.
Actor, Producer, Musician, DJ
- Father – Winston Elba (Shop Steward at Ford Dagenham) (Died of lung cancer in 2013)
- Mother – Eve Elba
- Siblings – None
- Others – Moses (Paternal Grandfather) (Sailor and Policeman)
Idris is represented by the London-based The Artists Partnership.
Hip Hop, Soul, R&B
He has released his music via 7wallace / Parlophone Records Limited.
6 ft 2¾ in or 190 cm
96 kg or 211.5 lbs
Girlfriend / Spouse
Idris Elba has dated –
- Hanne “Kim” Nørgaard (1999-2003) – Danish makeup artist Hanne Nørgaard and Idris Elba got married in 1999. Together they have a daughter named Isan (b. 2002). Elba has spoken about their financial struggles during their marriage which supposedly took a toll on their relationship. The couple filed for divorce in 2003. Their daughter stays with her mother in Atlanta in Georgia, United States after the couple’s divorce.
- Sonya Nicole Hamlin (2006) – Idris and Sonya Hamlin, who works as a property lawyer, were introduced by a mutual friend in 2006. The two were instantly attracted to each other and after dating for only a couple of months, they tied the knot in Las Vegas on a whim. Unfortunately, he was struggling for his big break at the time and Sonya’s flourishing career put a dent in their marriage. There were also reports that Elba got the marriage annulled as he wanted to maintain his sex symbol status in Hollywood which would have been affected by his marital status. They were married from April 9, 2006, to August 11, 2006.
- Desiree Newberry – In 2010, Elba had announced that he had fathered his first son named Otenga with his then-girlfriend Desiree Newberry. However, it later came to be known that he had gone for a paternity test which confirmed that he was not the biological father of the boy. He expressed the news stating that he was ‘heartbroken’ after learning the truth.
- Naiyana Garth (2013-2016) – Idris fell for another makeup artist when he began dating Naiyana Garth in 2013. Idris became a dad for the second time with a boy who he named Winston (b. 2014) after his father. However, in February 2016, he moved out of their London home and the long-time couple pulled the plug on their relationship. The news of their break up came within days of Elba being pictured partying with supermodel Naomi Campbell.
- K. Michelle (2013-2014) – Idris got involved with singer K. Michelle while he was still in a relationship with Naiyana Garth. The two first crossed paths at the Soul Train Awards and Michelle dedicated her album Anybody Wanna Buy A Heart to her brief time spent with Elba.
- Madonna (2016) – In October 2016, Idris was seen kissing American singer Madonna and sparked dating rumors.
- Sabrina Dhowre (2017-Present) – Idris Elba met American model and actress Sabrina Dhowre while shooting the film The Mountain Between Us in 2017. Sabrina is a former beauty pageant winner who was Miss Vancouver in 2014 and is 16 years his junior. But it couldn’t stop sparks from flying between the two. The couple made their red carpet debut at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2017. On February 10, 2018, Idris surprised many by proposing to his girlfriend at the London screening of his directorial debut film Yardie.
Race / Ethnicity
He has Sierra Leone ancestry on his father’s side and is of Ghanaian descent on his mother’s side.
With advancing age, his hair has turned ‘Salt and Pepper’.
- Deep baritone voice
- Thick London accent
- Several different tattoos on his body including one on the back of his hand which has a black star and a lion at the center representing the national flags of Ghana and Sierra Leone, the birthplace of his parents
Elba has endorsed the following brands –
- Toyota Avalon (2013)
- Sky Cable Television (UK) (2015)
- Stand Up 2 Cancer
- Fathom Events
- Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Siege
Idris has mentioned that he does not follow any religion. However, he considers himself to be a spiritual person.
Best Known For
Portraying memorable characters like the drug trafficker Stringer Bell on the HBO series The Wire (2002-2004), DCI John Luther on the BBC One Series Luther, and Nelson Mandela in the biographical film Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom in 2013.
As a Singer
Elba released his EP Idris Elba Presents mi Mandela in 2014 after being influenced by playing the titular role in the feature film Mandela: Long Way To Freedom. This was Irdris’s 4th EP.
In 1999, Idris made his theatrical film debut playing Grégoire in the French comedy movie Belle Maman (Step-mother in English).
First TV Show
Idris made his first TV show appearance on March 29, 1994, as Alex Mason in the Pig in the Middle episode of the crime-drama series The Bill.
Idris Elba is in tremendous shape for a guy in his late-40’s. His lean and shredded body has found many admirers equally spread in the male and female denominations. He works out as regularly as he can and starts his day off by running for 45 minutes followed by 100 push-ups and swimming – which he considers a total body workout.
Additionally, he is also a professional kickboxer and although he doesn’t follow the strenuous routine during shoots, he suffices with hitting the dojo 2 to 3 times per week. He breaks down the drills into 3-minute rounds which consists of high and low kicks, combos, and light sparring.
When it comes to his diet, he likes to begin his day with a healthy cereal and eggs to get some carbs and proteins into his system. Also, he has decided to cut back on rice, pasta, and beer to improve his energy levels and as a result, has managed to shed a couple of pounds.
Idris Elba Favorite Things
- Movies – Goodfellas (1990), The Champ (1979)
- Meal – Steak and eggs with spinach and tomatoes on the side for breakfast
- Song – Darling I Need Your Loving (By John Holt)
- Emojis – The Pound Fist, The 100
- Place To Shoot – Africa
- Cities – London, Accra (Capital of Ghana), New York City
- Drink – Beer
Source – Oprah, US Magazine, Esquire
Idris Elba Facts
- He shortened his real name Idrissa (which sounds feminine) to Idris when he began acting while studying at a school in Canning Town.
- As a teenager in 1986, Elba used to help his uncle with his wedding DJ business. Eventually, he enlisted the help of his friends and started his own DJ company within a year.
- He suffers from claustrophobia in real life.
- He is a self-confessed football fan and supports the Arsenal Football Club since the age of 15, although he has admitted to having attended very few matches. His dad is a supporter of the Manchester United Club.
- In May 2007, Idris was included in the list of 100 Most Beautiful People in the World, curated by People Magazine, at the 26th spot.
- He also made the cover of Essence Magazine’s “Hot Hollywood Men” issue in April 2004.
- He was the recipient of the OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) for his contribution to drama at the 2016 Queen’s New Year’s Honours List.
- Idris is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) since 2016.
- He was included in the list of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World in April 2016.
- Idris holds the distinction of being the only male to have appeared on the cover of Maxim magazine.
- Actor Daniel Craig had mentioned Elba as his favorite to succeed him as James Bond, saying that he would be fantastic as the MI6 agent.
- He counts actors Jamie Foxx and Chiwetel Ejiofor among his close friends.
- Surprisingly, till 2018, Idris had not acted in a Best Picture Oscar-nominated film.
- He had moved to New York City in the late 1990s to jump-start his acting career. One of his jobs at the time included working as a bouncer at Caroline’s Comedy Club on Broadway.
- He has admitted on the Graham Norton Show in 2007 to having a foot fetish. Kate Winslet corroborated his fetish while shooting a love scene for The Mountain Between Us in 2017.
- In April 2009, he was appointed as the Anti-Crime Ambassador of the Prince’s Trust which had helped him financially in getting his footing in the show business during his younger days.
- He has a penchant for high speed and is an avid rally fan. He has also participated in the Irish Tarmac Rally Championship.
- He trained for 12 months in kickboxing and mixed martial arts with Muay Thai coach Kieran Keddle. His training was documented into the series Idris Elba: Fighter in 2017 and was produced by the Discovery Channel.
- His first professional kickboxing fight took place in 2016 against a more experienced Dutch opponent Lionel Graves, which Elba won, at London’s York Hall.
- In his miniseries Idris Elba: No Limits, released in 2015, he took part in the ultimate speed challenges. On the show, he broke a land speed record, drove a dragster, and piloted an airplane in his quest for speed.
- He won a Screen Actor’s Guild Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture for his role in Beasts of No Nation (2015). As of 2016, he was the only SAG award winner in the category to not being nominated for an Oscar for the same performance.
- He was chosen as the People’s 2018 Sexiest Man Alive.
- Idris was always an athletic kid having played basketball, rugby, and soccer while growing up. He was also a part of a Sunday soccer league after graduating from school.
- Follow him on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
Featured Image by DFID / Flickr / CC BY 2.0