SP

LONDON-Idris Elba says he’s a “cheeky chappy”. The actor told Playboy magazine that growing up in the East of London formed his easygoing personality. “In the circumference of London, if you come from the east, people know you’re a cheeky chappy,” he said.

“You’ve got a bit of a mouth, a gift of the gab, you’re wheeling and dealing. My personality is formed by that. East Londoners speak cockney — if you’re born within a three-mile radius of the Bow Bells, then you’re cockney. That’s typically what my accent is, but it depends on who I’m talking to.

“Today I did a BET show and was like, ‘Yo, man, what up? How you feelin’, bro?’ I’m a bit of a parrot. “It depends on how many glasses of Guinness I smoke down… I tell a better story in a cockney accent — I’m more cheeky, there’s more eyewinks and finger-pointing — but I’m always worried people don’t understand what I’m saying. “East London language is quite lazy and laid-back, which makes it easier for me to speak American. When I hear people from Brooklyn, I can understand how they make those sounds, because my accent is similar. Our tongues work the same way.”

Elba says went to an all-boys school.