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Idris Elba Reveals How He 'Hustled' His Way Onto Jay-Z's 'American Gangster' Album

Idris Elba Reveals How He 'Hustled' His Way Onto Jay-Z's 'American Gangster' Album

Idris Elba is looking back at his cameo on Jay-Z‘s album American Gangster.

On Monday night (August 8), the 49-year-old actor appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon where he explained how he “hustled” his way onto the 52-year-old rapper’s 2007 album.

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Around the same time Jay was working on the album, Idris was filming the Ridley Scott movie American Gangster, which was also released in 2007.

“So I was in American Gangster and at the time I heard Jay was about to do an album associated with the film and I was like, ‘I need to get on that.’ As you do,” Idris said. “No idea why Jay-Z would be like, ‘Yeah, sure! Do it!’”

“So Lenny S., who works with Jay, was a good friend of Oronde [Garrett, Idris’ manager]. I wrote this long poem [with] a friend of mine, we put it to a beat — actually it was a rap, but it didn’t sound good as a rap,” Idris recalled. “So I said, ‘Maybe I should speak this.’ ‘Cause Jay might be a little more accommodating to my speaking voice. I sent it to him and we got this text back from Jay saying, ‘I don’t love this… I f–king love it.’”

Make sure you check out the trailer for Idris Elba‘s upcoming thriller Beast, which will be out in theaters on August 19.

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Photos: Getty Images
Posted to: Idris Elba, Jay Z

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