You’d forgive Idris Elba for being a wee bit tired of the constant James Bond talk, but it seems he’s still able to see the funny side.
Yesterday, current Bond writer for the Ian Fleming estate Anthony Horowitz said that he was sorry for comments he made, where he described Elba as being ‘too street’ for the role.
A few took there to be some racial undertones to the remark, but he issued a pretty contrite statement saying that there was no offence intended.
In an Instagram post, Elba addressed Horowitz’s clearly uncomfortable situation, saying: “Always Keep Smiling!! It takes no energy and never hurts! Learned that from the Street!!”
Horowitz, who was speaking in the Daily Mail around the release of his new Bond book 'Trigger Mortis’, said: “Idris Elba is a terrific actor, but I can think of other black actors who would do it better.
“For me, Idris Elba is a bit too rough to play the part. It’s not a colour issue. I think he is probably a bit too 'street’ for Bond. Is it a question of being suave? Yeah.”
He later tweeted a statement, back peddling over the comment, and saying that he was 'mortified’ over the response.
“I’m really sorry my comments about Idris Elba have caused offence. That wasn’t my intention,” he said.
“I was asked in my interview if Idris Elba would make a good James Bond. In the article I expressed the opinion that to my mind Adrian Lester would be a better choice, but I’m a writer not a casting director so what do I know?
“Clumsily, I chose the word ‘street’ as Elba’s gritty portrayal of DCI John Luther was in my mind but I admit it was a poor choice of word. I am mortified to have caused offence.”
Among those taking issue with the remark was American writer Ta-Nehisi Coates, who tweeted: “Just be honest and say ‘James Bond’s being white is important to me’ and be done with it … Elba is ‘too street’ in much the same way that Obama was ‘too foreign,’ and King was ‘too communist.’”
Hopefully, we now put this all to bed. Unless Elba gets the job as the new James Bond, of course…
Image credits: PA