Idris Elba Responds James Bond Author's
Rob Latour/REX

LONDON — Idris Elba, whose “Beasts of No Nation” had its world premiere in Venice this week, has responded to James Bond author Anthony Horowitz’s comment that Elba was “too street” to play 007.

Horowitz, who has added to the novel franchise created by Ian Fleming with a new 007 adventure called “Trigger Mortis,” told the Daily Mail recently: “For me, Idris Elba is a bit too rough to play the part. It’s not a color issue. I think he is probably a bit too ‘street’ for Bond. Is it a question of being suave? Yeah.”

Horowitz subsequently apologized for his remarks about Elba, who is best known for his roles in “The Wire” and “Luther.” “I’m really sorry my comments about Idris Elba have caused offense. That wasn’t my intention,” Horowitz said on Twitter. “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?”

Horowitz concluded: “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 offense.”

In what some have interpreted as a sarcastic riposte to Horowitz’s original comment, Elba posted a remark on his Instagram page, next to a screen grab of the Daily Mail article: “Always keep smiling!! It takes no energy and never hurts! Learned that from the Street!! #septemberstillloveyou.”

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