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Idris Elba

British-born actor Idris Elba mesmerized American television viewers on three seasons of HBO's gold-standard crime drama, "The Wire" (2002-08), playing Stringer Bell, a brilliant, Machiavellian cocaine entrepreneur aspiring to evolve his operation into real estate and citywide power-brokering. The career-defining role catapult Elba from obscure British actor to international acclaim as one of Hollywood's most wanted men. Also a singer and deejay, releasing records in the former capacity as Driis and working in the latter as Big Driis or DJ Driis the Londoner, Elba rode his smoldering "Wire" ethos to "It" status in both the hip-hop community and broader popular culture, which included a feature lead opposite Beyoncé Knowles in the thriller "Obsessed" (2009) and a prominent multi-episode guest role as the new office boss on the hit comedy, "The Office" (NBC, 2005-2013). After receiving widespread critical acclaim for his portrayal of the titular troubled detective "Luther" (BBC One, 2010-15), Elba was seemingly everywhere, appearing in a string of blockbusters that included the superhero epics "Thor" (2011) and its sequels, Ridley Scott's "Prometheus" (2012), Jon Favreau's live-action "The Jungle Book" (2016) and Aaron Sorkin's "Molly's Game" (2017). As he continued to showcase his versatility, Elba, typically sans his native Cockney accent, carved a niche as a go-to actor for characters exuding a quiet strength and deliberative cool.
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