Idris Elba

Big Driis
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Updated: Oct 28, 2021

Birth Name: Idrissa Akuna Elba

Nick Name(s)/Stage Name(s): Idris Elba/DJ Big Driis/ Big Driis the Londoner/Big Driis/7 Dub/Me Innit

Birth Date: September 6, 1972

Genres: Action, Animation, Drama, Sci-fi, Superhero, Thriller

Occupation(s): Actor, Writer, Producer, Rapper, Singer, Songwriter, DJ

Years Active: 1994 till Present

Label(s): Parlophone/7Wallace

Net Worth: $30 million


Personal Life

Idris Elba was born in the London Borough of Hackney to a Sierra Leonean father and a Ghanaian mother. His parents were married in Sierra Leone and later moved to London.

The actor has been married three times; first to Hanne 'Kim' Norgaard (1999 to 2003), to Sonya Nicole Hamlin (the union lasted four months in 2006), and Sabrina Dhowre in April 2019.

Elba has three children; a daughter with Kim, a son with his former girlfriend Naiyana Garth, and another son with present wife Sabrina.


He left school in 1988 and subsequently won a spot in the National Youth Music Theatre after getting a grant of £1,500.


Elba got his first role in Crimewatch and appeared in the BBC children's drama The Boot Street Band in 1994. He got his first notable role the following year in the series Bramwell, a medical drama set in England.

After playing a supporting role in a 2001 episode of Law & Order, he secured a lead role in the HBO drama series The Wire. He played Russell 'Stringer' Bell.

In 2007, he was signed in a starring role in Daddy's Little Girls and appeared alongside singer Chris Brown in the 2007 drama This Christmas.

He portrayed Captain Janek in Ridley Scott's Prometheus and joined the cast of the sci-fi movie Pacific Rim (2013). He also played the character of Heimdall in Thor, a role he reprised in several other MCU films.

In 2019, he starred as the antagonist in Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, a spinoff of the Fast & Furious franchise.

Music Career

Apart from acting, Elba performs as a DJ under the alias DJ Big Driis or Big Driis the Londoner. He raps and also sings, making appearances in the music videos of Fat Joe (2002), Angie Stone (2004), and rapper Giggs (2010).

He released an album, Murdah Loves John (The John Luther Character Album) in 2015 and has several remixes to his name.


BET Award (2009, 2010)

NACCP Image Award (2010, 2014, 2016)

Golden Globe Award (2011)

Black Reel Award (2011, 2016)

Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award (2014)

Independent Spirit Award (2015)

Kermode Award (2015)

Screen Actors Guild Award (2015)

Critics' Choice Television Award (2015)

Screen Actors Guild Award (2015)


[On why he uses an American accent when conversing with fans of The Wire] "Wherever I go, the real hardcore drug dealers come up to me and confide in me. I almost feel guilty turning around and saying, 'Ello, mate. My name's Idris and I'm from London.' I don't want to break the illusion."

"I've had three or four years of unemployment, not getting acting jobs."

"Look, when I wasn't in television or in films, I didn't get any special attention when I went out. Some beautiful people always attract attention. I didn't until I got on television."


Was named the Sexiest Man Alive by People magazine in 2018.

Has been a huge fan of Arsenal FC since he was 15 years old.

Worked for a time as a bouncer when he first moved to New York as an aspiring actor in the late 1990s.


Buffalo Soldiers (2001)

Daddy's Little Girls (2005)

American Gangster (2007)

Obsessed (2009)

Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (2011)

Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (2013)

Zootopia (2015)

Cats (2019)

Concrete Cowboy (2020)


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