Dwayne Johnson wants us to know his ‘Hobbs and Shaw’ co-star Idris Elba is a ‘badass’

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Dwayne Johnson attends the 'Pain & Gain' premiere on April 11, 2013 in Miami Beach, Florida. (Photo by Larry Marano/Getty Images)

Idris Elba may be playing a villain in Dwayne Johnson‘s Fast & & Furious spinoff film, Hobbs and Shaw, but in real life, it’s clearly nothing but love between these two.

According to Complex, Elba will play a character named Brixton, opposite Johnson as government agent Luke Hobbs and Jason Statham as Deckard Shaw. After the characters of Hobbs and Shaw worked against each other in previous installments of the film franchise, they’ve now joined forces in this new film to defeat Brixton, who Johnson calls “the baddest villain the franchise has ever seen.”

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“If you have Hobbs and Shaw, two beloved characters within the Fast & Furious world, how do we create a villain who is formidable, viable, better, stronger, and more diabolical? … Who is the actor who can actually bring that weight?” the actor recently told Entertainment Weekly. “And I’ve known Idris for some time now, and we felt like he was the perfect guy to come in and be our main villain.”

“Coming in, he is undefeated,” Johnson continues about Elba’s character. “And for a guy who is undefeated, three men enter and either one man leaves or two leave. … Idris is the perfect guy. Obviously, he’s a phenomenal actor, really brings a great weight and quality to the role—and a viability. He’s a big man and he’s a legitimate badass and a legitimate martial artist.”

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Currently, Hobbs and Shaw is shooting in London but will ultimately wrap up production in Hawaii next year. The 46-year-old actor says while the spinoff marks a clear evolution in the Fast franchise, faithful fans will still enjoy the same comedy, action, and “holy shit moments,” they’ve come to expect.

“It was also imperative—not only to me, but to Jason, [director David Leitch], the entire cast—that we still maintained the core values of what has made Fast & Furious such a beloved franchise,” he concludes. “And those core values are a code of honor, a ride-or-die spirit, and above all else, family comes before anything.”