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In case you missed it, Idris Elba covers the latest issue of Essence Magazine.


And in addition to being as gorgeous as always, he talks about the struggle he was living around the time his nine-year-old daughter Isan was born.

In the late 1990’s, after his sisterlike friend Marsha Burnett made the move to the U.S., Elba left the night shift at the Ford Motors plant he worked at with his father and hopped the pod with hopes of becoming an actor. “He’d deejay at night, crash on the counch in the apartment I was sharing, and come to my office at Bad Boy Records and just sit in the corner till it was time for the night to start again,” says Burnett. When he’d earned enough, Elba rented a room at the YMCA on 14th Street. Later he moved his wife and record collection from England to an apartment in the East Village, attending auditions by day and hitting clubs where he hoped to deejay at night. […] But DJ gigs weren’t enough to support his then pregnant wife, and their union was shaky.

“That was one of my most desperate times,” says Elba, who had just begun auditioning for The Wire in the winter of 2001. “My marriage was breaking up, the acting wasn’t popping off, she was pregnant… It was like, ‘Ugh!'” He throws his head back dramatically recalling those days. “Those were bleak times.”

Despite all of that, fatherhood seems to have turned out pretty well for him.



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