Idris Elba on scaling up in ‘Luther: The Fallen Sun’: ‘The crossover to film felt natural’

The movie, which serves as a continuation of the popular series of the same name, premiered Friday on Netflix.

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“Luther” fans, rejoice! The popular Idris Elba character returns in a brand new Netflix film, “Luther: The Fallen Sun.” TheGrio caught up with Elba ahead of the film’s Netflix premiere, breaking down the decision to switch from TV for this installment, what sets “The Fallen Sun” apart and more.

Netflix's "Luther: The Fallen Sun" New York Premiere
Idris Elba attends Netflix’s “Luther: The Fallen Sun” New York Premiere on March 8, 2023, at the Paris Theater in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

Described as an “epic continuation” of the acclaimed series, “Luther: The Fallen Sun” brings viewers to London where a serial killer is on the loose while John Luther (Elba) sits in jail. “Haunted by his failure to capture the cyber psychopath who now taunts him, Luther decides to break out of prison to finish the job by any means necessary,” the official synopsis reads.

Speaking to the decision to tell this story as a film rather than another “Luther” season, Elba told us it gave the team the opportunity to scale up. “It’s quite a grounded premise, right? The internet is the devil,” he said. “But there is this idea that you can reach a scale that really magnifies the issues and magnifies how many people are really effected by cybersecurity.”

Continued Elba, “We could have done that in a TV show for sure … but putting it in a bigger lens, blowing the scale out allowed for the story to resonate a bit better,” he explained. “The format of film just allows us to really peel the onion back on quite a simple idea.”

This particular cybersecurity story resonates even more in 2023 than it would have more than a decade ago when “Luther” first premiered. “It highlights how much connectivity is different from where at one stage, we were all sitting at our computer for our connectivity,” Elba said, “and now, our fridge is a portal into our lives and a way to connect to the rest of the world so that is a fascinating sort of landscape to tell a story from.”

Still, because of the short episode count and in-depth nature of the “Luther” series, the jump from television to film was not too hard. “The crossover to film felt natural,” Elba said. “There’s definitely that sort of appetite from us to sort of do more, we take a simple, grounded, relatable story and give them a bigger scale, but keeping them in the constraints of “Luther-land.”

“Luther: The Fallen Sun” is currently streaming on Netflix.

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