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(Credit: BBC)

Film

Idris Elba poised to join £1billion bid for Channel 4

Luther actor Idris Elba is reportedly in talks to back a £1billion bid for the soon-to-be privatised Channel 4. 

According to The Sunday Times, the Hackney-born actor is in discussions with entrepreneur Marc Boyan, the founder and CEO of marketing and communications firm The Miroma Group.

Elba’s potential bid comes following the government’s recent announcement that it plans to privatise Channel 4 in an attempt to secure its longer-term funding and allow it to compete with major streaming platforms, such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

Before rising to fame in Luther and HBO’s The Wire, Elba appeared in several British TV shows, including the police drama The Bill and the Channel 5 soap Family Affairs.

He previously mentioned the vital importance of British television and his experience with Channel 5, telling The Irish Times: “At the time, Channel 5 didn’t have lots of viewers. Few thousand, probably?”

“But because they were a new channel, they were courageous, they put lots of new young actors on screen, and I hold the experience close to my heart. It was a time that exploded my confidence.”

Discussing the decision to privatise Channel 4, Nadine Dorries, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said the move had been made to “free” the channel “from the constraints of the state”.

She dismissed criticism of the decision as “lazy, overwrought and ill-informed rhetoric from the leftie luvvie lynch mob”.

In a statement, Channel 4 wrote: “With over 60,000 submissions to the Government’s public consultation, it is disappointing that today’s announcement has been made without formally recognising the significant public interest concerns which have been raised.”

It continued: “Channel 4 has engaged in good faith with the Government throughout the consultation process, demonstrating how it can continue to commission much-loved programmes from the independent sector across the UK that represent and celebrate every aspect of British life as well as increase its contribution to society while maintaining ownership by the public.”

Elsewhere, Idris Elba is set to star in the upcoming Baltasar Kormákur film, Beast, which is set for release on August 19th. Watch the official trailer below.