The ‘Sound of Metal’ actor remembers the advice given by the ‘Luther’ star when he was about to relocate to the United States in an effort to further his acting career.
AceShowbiz -“Sound of Metal” star Riz Ahmed has credited pal Idris Elba for helping him hit the big time in Hollywood – because the Brit used to think he had no chance of finding success in the U.S.
The actor scored his first Oscar nomination for his role as a drummer losing his hearing in the 2019 film, even though he never imagined he would have a career in America.
“I remember having a chat with Idris Elba in London thinking, ‘Man, I’m not going to go to America. What are they going to do with someone like me over there?’ ” Riz told Variety.
“It was terrible, this idea of no clear example or something that’s been carved out before you.”
But the “Luther” star told him not to sell himself short.
“He said to me, ‘Don’t categorize yourself. What have you got to lose?’ “
Riz took the advice and landed a role in the 2014 Jake Gyllenhaal film “Nightcrawler“, then two years later he got the part which set him firmly on the road to Hollywood stardom, as a murder suspect in BBC/HBO drama “The Night Of” – and he took home an Emmy for the role too.
“I didn’t really think a career was viable for me until 10 years into it, so early on I felt like I had to work on developing a lot of range,” he added.
“After The Night Of popped, I felt a sense of momentum. It happens to a lot of people. The roller-coaster nature of this business keeps you on your toes and stops you from getting complacent.”
And he still draws on Idris’ wise words, now that he’s inundated with acting offers.
“Of course, if you believe on some deep internal level that you aren’t the right type – the right color, shape, size, accent – then you will start instinctively wearing masks,” he explained.
“So it’s been a shift in self-perception for me to say, ‘You know what? I am enough. We are all enough.’ “
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