Mandela role joy for Elba.
BRITISH actor Idris Elba is set to portray Nelson Mandela on the big screen.
The Luther star, 39, will take on the role of the former South African president in the film adaptation of Mandela's autobiography, Long Walk to Freedom.
Elba said yesterday: "My big project this year, I'm gonna go play Nelson Mandela in Long Walk To Freedom, which is his official book."
The actor, who currently stars in Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, added: "That's where my head is geared to this summer."
The King's Speech director Tom Hooper has been linked with a role behind the camera on the biopic.
Mandela chronicled his early life, coming of age, education and 27 years in prison in his memoir.
Elba, who starred as drug lord and aspiring tycoon Russell "Stringer" Bell in TV hit The Wire, previously said playing Mandela would be one of his dream roles.
Morgan Freeman played Mandela in Invictus.
AMBITION J Idris Elba