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Idris Elba covers Essence magazine’s November 2011 issue and inside, he takes off his usual photo shoot suit and gets comfy in casual wear while playing chess, laying back in his living room, and walking the city streets.

Read a few excerpts below:

On his 9-year-old daughter Isan:

“She’s a nerd really, which I couldn’t be more grateful for. She’s not much impressed with what I do, but she does see how people react to me in the streets.”

On his career:

“I think what audiences expect of me is to act my ass off, and that’s great, because that’s what I do, that’s what I love doing.”

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