Idris Elba’s Candid Confession: Selling Weed To Dave Chappelle Before Fame

By Larissa C

During an interview on Sirius XM’s The Jess Cagle Show, actor Idris Elba revealed an interesting detail about his past before achieving fame on HBO’s The Wire. Elba mentioned that, in addition to his various side hustles as a young actor, he used to sell marijuana, and one of his notable clients was none other than comedian Dave Chappelle.

Source: UK Department for International Development / CC BY 2.0 / Wiki Commons

Elba explained that his involvement in the drug trade was a means of supporting himself as he pursued his acting career. Alongside selling weed, he also worked as a DJ and a doorman at Caroline’s Comedy Club. His distinctive appearance and accent made him memorable to the club’s patrons, including Chappelle.

Elba fondly recalled the comedians who remember him as the “tall English guy with the funny accent and the little hair,” noting Chappelle’s specific recollection of buying weed from him.

As The Wire marks its 20th anniversary this year, Elba reflected on the impact of the show on both his personal and professional life. He described the first season as a sleeper hit, gradually gaining attention and becoming a favorite among viewers, especially in the African American community.

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By the third season, the series had achieved widespread popularity, often being mentioned alongside other acclaimed shows like The Sopranos. Elba emphasized that The Wire continues to captivate audiences, with new viewers discovering its brilliance even today.

This revelation from Idris Elba offers an intriguing glimpse into his past and adds a touch of real-life connection between him and Dave Chappelle. As both actors have reached great heights in their respective careers, their paths crossing during Elba’s hustling days adds an interesting anecdote to their shared history.