A 700 mile trek across South Africa awaits the British comedian.
Everyone's been vowing to get fit this year; whether it's going for that extra run, hitting the gym more often or walking to the store instead of driving. But we're willing to bet no-one's taking to an extreme like Eddie Izzard, who has claimed to embark on 27 marathons in 27 days.
Eddie Izzard gets his running shoes back on
One marathon in one day is enough for us; we'd even be impressed with two in a year. But 27 marathons in 27 days?! That's not all either, because Izzard will be taking to the sweltering climate of South Africa for this challenge, a far cry from UK temperatures and probably not the most comfortable to exercise non-stop in.
* Nelson Mandela DEAD AT 95 Civil rights icon NELSON MANDELA has died at the age of 95. The former South African president passed away on Thursday (05Dec13). Born in 1918, Rolihlahla Mandela grew up in the tiny village of Mvezo, where his father ruled as chief. Following his father's death, he became the first person in his family to be sent to school, where he was named Nelson by a teacher. He attended Fort Hare University, but was thrown out for opposing the institution's policies, and moved to Johannesburg, where he became interested in politics. Following the 1948 election victory of the Afrikaner-dominated National Party, who supported the apartheid policy of racial segregation, Mandela became a leader of the African National Congress (ANC), which led a sabotage campaign against the government in a bid to bring an end to apartheid rule. He was arrested in 1961 and sentenced to 27 years in prison for his for his anti-authority stance. He served 18 years behind bars, the majority of which he spent on Robben Island, where he studied law and earned his degree. He was supported by a growing movement calling for his release and in 1998, the likes of Sting and Peter Gabriel performed at a 70th Birthday Tribute concert in London in support of the cause. He was finally freed from Victor Verster Prison on 11 February, 1990 and upon his release he promised to bring the country together through peace and democracy in a speech which was broadcast around the world. Taking up overall leadership of the ANC in 1991, he successfully led the party through negotiations to allow South Africa's first multi-racial elections, which earned him the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993. Both black and white South Africans went to the polls in 1994, and Mandela was elected the country's first black president, as well as the oldest, aged 75. He is celebrated for helping heal racial tension in the country, as well as tackling child poverty, overhauling healthcare, improving education - Friday 6th December 2013
Nelson Mandela has died Nelson Mandela, 1997 This is a PR photo. WENN does not claim any Copyright or License in the attached material. Fees charged by WENN are for WENN's services only, and do not, nor are they intended to, convey to the user any ownership of Copyright or License in the material. By publishing this material, the user expressly agrees to indemnify and to hold WENN harmless from any claims, demands, or causes of action arising out of or connected in any way with user's publication of the material. Supplied by Featuring: Nelson Mandela, 1997 When: 01 Jan 1997
Nelson Mandela has died Nelson Mandela, ca. 1996 This is a PR photo. WENN does not claim any Copyright or License in the attached material. Fees charged by WENN are for WENN's services only, and do not, nor are they intended to, convey to the user any ownership of Copyright or License in the material. By publishing this material, the user expressly agrees to indemnify and to hold WENN harmless from any claims, demands, or causes of action arising out of or connected in any way with user's publication of the material. Supplied by Featuring: Nelson Mandela, ca. 1996 When: 01 Jan 1996
Nelson Mandela has died NELSON MANDELA appearing at the Brooking Institution to promote his foundation establishing in conjunction with Brooking three foundations benefiting South Africa. Washington Where: DC, Washington DC, United States When: 16 May 2005
Nelson Mandela has died Nelson Mandela appearing at the '46664' concert honouring his 90th birthday at Hyde Park London, England - 27.06.08 Featuring: Nelson Mandela Where: London, United Kingdom When: 27 Jun 2008
Despite a very limited release in the US, the film is enjoying incredible popularity in South Africa.
Justin Chadwick’s Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom is far from typical box office fare. Nevertheless, the film is enjoying quite a bit of success in this department, particularly when it comes to South African audiences. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Idris Elba starrer, which opened Thursday, is already the top earner in cinemas operated by the two major South African chains, Ster Kinekor and NuMetro, as well as the leading independent cinemas groups.
The Idris Elba and Naomie Watts starrer is enjoying a sgnificant boost from South African audiences.
Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, which stars Elba as the South African revolutionary and Naomie Harris as Mandela’s wife, Winnie, an activist in her own right, has so far grossed $73,000 (or around 750,000 rand). These are just the proceeds from Thursday showings. The film has topped the previous record for the period and with just four showings per day, as opposed to the usual six. To put this into perspective, the movie opened as number one in the country, leaving even The Hunger Games: Catching Fire behind by 39%.
Idris Elba has seen his star rise for a while now, but even he was daunted at the prospect of portraying Nelson Mandela.
This week sees the release of Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, starring Idris Elba as the South African leader. Elba’s star has been steadily rising since he played DCI John Luther in the eponymous crime series, with key parts in both Thor movies, as well as 2012’s Prometheus and this year’s Pacific Rim. While we’ve seen him mostly in fantasy and sci-fi recently, it is in this Mandela biopic that Elba will truly come into his own, on the big screen at least.
Elba has his rituals to help him stay grounded.
What are the critics saying about the political biopic?
Idris Elba – one of the more exciting actors of his generation – portraying Nelson Mandela – one of the most important men for many generations – sounded like a sure-fire hit. The early reviews would suggest those musings were a touch premature as Long Walk to Freedom slips down the betting odds list for Best Picture.
Idris Elba [L] as Nelson Mandela and Naomie Harris [R] as Winnie Mandela
“The film overcompensates. It bellows at you. Tells you apartheid was bad by placing champagne-sipping whites on a balcony and black people down on the streets below. It pumps in the period detail, drops in chunks of news footage to back up its importance,” say The Guardian.
The controversial biopic is due out this September.
This year will see the release of a full-blown Nelson Mandela biopic, but before that, another film will focus on a crucial character in the Mandela story – Winnie Mandela, the woman, who stood by her husband and became a tireless activist in her own right. The trailer for Winnie Mandela has just been released and, despite some controversy around Jennifer Hudson playing the part of Mandela, the preview seems every bit as grandiose and inspirational as you’d expect.
The trailer for the biographical movie was released in tandem with the former South African leader's 95th birthday
In what was definitely a well-timed publicity stunt that had long been discussed, the trailer for Idris Elba's star turn as Nelson Mandela was released in cinemas (and later online) the coincide with the former South African ruler's 95th birthday this Thursday (July 18). The first full trailer for Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom is one filled with gravitas and a powerful performance, giving potential audiences their first proper look at the biopic.
Elba looks like a prime candidate for Best Actor at the 2014 Oscars
The two-and-a-half minute clip gives us a relatively comprehensive look into the life and work of the iconic South African freedom fighter, with Elba taking on the young Mandela during his first brushes with the law and his meeting with future wife Winnie (Naomie Harris), before being sentenced to a lengthy prison term and eventual fight back against the system - all with K'Naan's 'Wavin' Flag' serving as the soundtrack.
Elba is favorite for the Oscar already
Idris Elba has played some great characters in his acting career, but none more important, pertinent and challenging that than of Nelson Mandela in Mandela, which has today been handed a fantastic theatrical trailer. Take a look at Elba in action below.
Mandela sees Elba stretch his vocal chords into different shapes once again, this time with a South African accent, which, judging by the trailer, is right on the Rand. His role as Stringer Bell in HBO’s hit crime drama The Wire endeared him to an American audience, many of which weren’t aware he was an English native, born in Hackey, London no less.
Continue reading: 'Mandela' Theatrical Trailer: Idris Elba's Biggest Challenge Yet
Stevie Wonder announced he would not perform in the State of Florida until its 'stand your ground' laws are revoked.
Stevie Wonder will boycott the state of Florida due to its 'stand your ground' legislation. The singer was prompted to comment on the law following awareness of the legislation generated by the George Zimmerman trial, according to a report in the LA Times.
Stevie Wonder at an event honouring David Foster, Hollywood Walk of Fame, L.A.
The soul sensation told a crowd in Quebec City, Canada that he would never perform in the state or any other which held firm to their "stand your ground" law. He told his audience ""I decided today that until the 'stand your ground' law is abolished in Florida, I will never perform there again". He went on to say "as a matter of fact, wherever I find that law exists, I will not perform in that state or in that part of the world".
Continue reading: Stevie Wonder To Boycott Florida Over 'Stand Your Ground' Legislation
Idris Elba's performance as Nelson Mandela is already generating Oscar buzz. The mysterious trailer suggests the Weinstein Company could have something special on its hands.
Idris Elba is the man to beat the 2014 Academy Awards for his portrayal of South African President Nelson Mandela, according to the bookmakers, anyway. Elba's star has risen in recent years thanks to BBC series Luther, rumors of the James Bond role and a role in Guillermo Del Toro's latest blockbuster Pacific Rim.
Idris Elba [L] as Nelson Mandela and Naomie Harris [R] as Winnie Mandela
The first trailer for upcoming biopic Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom - from The Other Boleyn Girl director Justin Chadwick - rolled out online this week and features a startling, if limited, first look at Hackney-born Elba's performance "No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin. People learn to hate. They can be taught to love for love comes more naturally to the human heart," goes the spine-tingling voiceover as Mandela moves across the valley. It appears Elba - wearing Mandela's signature yellow shirt - has got the President's poise down to a tee.
The BET awards were a hit
Don Cheadle took the time to pay tribute and focus attention towards Nelson Mandela last night at The BET Awards while presenting the Best Male R&B Pop Artist to Miguel.
Nelson Mandela has been on life support for the past week
"We want to take a moment and send our prayers and thoughts to a man who literally changed the world,” he said of the South African leader, who revolutionised his country during apartheid and suffered as a result. "This evening we would like to offer prayers and support and hope to the extraordinary Nelson Mandela and his family.”
Continue reading: Special Praise For Nelson Mandela At BET Awards 2013
Date of birth
18th July, 1918
Date of death
5th December, 2013