Actor Idris Elba admits his new film “Beast” wasn’t exactly a family affair ― because he wouldn’t cast his 20-year-old daughter Isan in the film.
Elba said his real-life daughter auditioned to play his daughter in the film, which tells the story of a widowed father who brings his two daughters to an elite game reserve in South Africa and ends up tangling with a rogue lion.
“Interestingly enough, my daughter auditioned for this role, she wants to be an actress and she wanted — she auditioned,” Elba said in an Aug. 11 interview on the radio show “The Breakfast Club.” (Watch below.)
If Isan thought the family connection would get her the role, she was sorely mistaken. Another woman was cast ― because she had better chemistry with Elba.
“And you know, it came down to chemistry in the end,” Elba admitted. “You know, my daughter, she was great, but the relationship in the film and the relationship with my daughter was — the chemistry wasn’t right for film, weirdly enough.”
There was a downside to the choice. “My daughter didn’t talk to me for about three weeks,” Elba said.
“Beast” producer Will Packer told the radio show he was impressed that Elba made the “tough” decision, and trusted him and director Baltasar Kormákur to make the casting choice that was best for the film.
“She was very good, very close,” Packer said of Isan Elba’s audition. “Idris is right, some of the nuances of that real-life relationship sometimes doesn’t translate on screen.”
She seems to have recovered from her disappointment.
“I’m really proud of her to go through that, you know what I mean,” Elba said. “And then not get the role, but still come to the premiere.”
You can watch the interview below or listen to the podcast here.