Our Gumball 3000 week continues with another famous face from the rally (click here if you've missed the others). As the Gumball 3000 passes through Quebec today, we bring you our interview with London-born renaissance man Idris Elba, who most of you know from The Wire. Read on for Idris' thoughts on the rally, his Gumball mixtape idea, and what he whips at home...
NAME: Idris Elba
CAR: "I'm driving an Aston Martin DB9 soft-top and in the U.S. leg I will probably drive a hard-top. It's a fast little car; it was James Bond's whip. It has the tiptronic [transmission]... it's a nice little car."
NUMBER OF GUMBALLS SO FAR: "None."
WHAT ABOUT GUMBALL INTERESTED YOU?: "For me, it was just the idea of seeing the world, traveling, and literally doing the miles. I fly a lot in my profession but this is actually on the road seeing the world go by in a fast car, experiencing all the sites and the cities. Just to have the accomplishment and to be like 'Yeah, I did that.'"
WHY THIS CAR?: "Actually my first choice was a Mini Cooper. I'm not lying. I was gonna drive a Mini Cooper because a Mini was the first car I ever bought. Unfortunately Mini dropped out of the deal at the last minute. Then Aston Martin came in."
MODIFICATIONS: "None, it's box standard. Those cars man... they are like supercharged cars out the factory. I'm pretty pleased with it."
CARS AT HOME: "Two cars. An Escalade and a Dodge 1500 Ram."
ULTIMATE RIDE: "Boy I don't even know... I would probably say a McLaren F1, is that wack?"
ON THE ROAD MUST HAVES: "Clean underwear, my Puma sneaks, my laptop, my microphone. We are gonna do this mixtape [on the rally]. Over each city, starting tonight, we are going to make a song from scratch. We are going to get an artist from that city to jump on a track or I will jump on a track try to make this mixtape from here to New York."
Complex: What do you do besides act?
Elba: "I do a little bit of everything, man. A little spoken word, a little rap, a little singing [laughs]."
Complex: How long have you been doing all that?
Elba: All my life actually. I got a couple records... two EP's actually. One is hip-hop, the other is more R&B.
Complex: You produce, too, right?
Elba: Yeah, I produce as well. I produced a record for Angie Stone, I produced the intro for American Gangster, I produced the intro for Pharoahe Monch's new album.
Complex: What do you listen to on the road when you are driving?
Elba: "I haven't set up a playlist yet, but I suspect we are going to be listening to a lot of beats. I might get a couple audio books man 'cause that's a long journey. What will we read? The Complete Works of William Shakespeare... no? That's not gonna work. Some Danielle Steel... no, maybe not. I don't know yet. You know what I might do? Stop by every city and pick up some new music—just get a collection and mix it. That is actually a good idea is to get a song for each city... ."