Idris Elba's In The Long Run to 'remind people we were once thicker-skinned'

Natasha Sporn

Idris Elba has said that his new comedy In The Long Run better reflects the era he grew up in, when people were “thicker-skinned”.

The Luther star plays Walter in the upcoming Sky1 series, with his character loosely based on his own childhood growing up in east London in the 1980s.

The six-part programme, created by Elba himself, is set in a multicultural London and the script contains moments of casual racism.

Speaking to Radio Times he said: “It's good that that's come across because in early, early talks that was something I wanted to be upfront about.

New comedy: Idris Elba and Bill Bailey star in the new sitcom (Sky)

“I wanted people to be reminded that, as PC as we all are now - which is fine, it's good - we were thicker-skinned back then."

He added: "Not that it makes casual racism right, but actually in the long run we all got along with it."

Inspiration: Idris Elba drew on his own experiences growing up in east London in the 1980s (Matthias Nareyek/Getty Images)

"At one point my character's wife says something like: 'They're English, they don't know any better’.

“And there's an Asian character who is casually racist towards Africans.”

Elba concluded: “We wanted to make sure it was a full picture."

In The Long Run begins on Sky1 on Thursday, March 29.

Additional reporting by Press Association.