WATCH | Idris Elba jokes about run-in with a lion in South Africa

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Idris Elba in Beast.
Idris Elba in Beast.
Photo: YouTube/Screengrab
  • Idris Elba is in the middle of a press tour for his latest movie, Beast.
  • The actor revealed he had a run-in with a real-life lion while filming on location in South Africa.
  • "We had to try to make this feel as real as possible," the actor said about why they chose the country to film.

Idris Elba is in the middle of a press tour for his latest movie, Beast, which was filmed in South Africa.

The film follows a father and his two teenage daughters who find themselves hunted by a massive rogue lion intent on proving that the savannah has but one apex predator.

And while Elba must fight a CGI lion in the pulse-pounding new thriller, he had a close encounter with the real-deal while on set in Limpopo.

"There was a lion there who wasn't in the movie, and he was on set," the actor exclusively told E!'s Daily Pop at the film's NYC premiere

Elba joked that he kept his cool, telling the wild animal: "'That's my guy. Hey, buddy, what you doing over there? You running away?'"

Elsewhere in the interview, Elba shared details about filming the action flick.

"We had to try to make this feel as real as possible," the 49-year-old said. "We flew out into the middle of South Africa, into the wilderness. And we had less, so we consumed less, our minds were sharp, we worked hard. It was lots of rehearsal. It was a small, tight crew, but we really worked as a family."


Starring alongside Elba is South African actor Sharlto Copley together with Iyana Halley and Leah Sava Jeffries.

The film was shot entirely in South Africa, with the final showdown filmed in the Northern Cape, on the Namibian border.

READ MORE | Idris Elba must protect his daughters from a massive lion in Beast

Beast opens in South African cinemas on Friday, 12 August.

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