KUALA LUMPUR (March 17): British actor Idris Elba said he had tested positive for COVID-19, joining Tom Hanks and his wife, Rita Wilson, among the first major celebrities to contract the respiratory disease, Reuters reported yesterday.
Elba, who starred in television police drama Luther and played the Norse god Heimdall in Avengers: Infinity War, said in a Twitter post yesterday that he had no symptoms but was isolating himself from others. It was not clear where he was located.
“This morning I tested positive for COVID-19. I feel ok, I have no symptoms so far but have been isolated since I found out about my possible exposure to the virus. Stay home people and be pragmatic. I will keep you updated on how I’m doing … No panic,” Elba, 47, wrote.
Elba said he had taken the test because he found out on Friday he had been exposed to someone who had contracted the disease. He did not identify the person.
“Stay positive. Don’t freak out,” he said in a video accompanying the Twitter post. His wife, Sabrina Dhowre, was seen in the background.
Hanks and Wilson said last week that they had contracted the disease while working on a film in Australia.
People magazine reported on Monday that the couple have since left hospital. They are now resting at a rented home in Australia and remain under quarantine in the house, the US magazine said, citing a representative of the actor.
Former Bond girl Olga Kurylenko, who appeared in Quantum of Solace in 2008, said on Sunday that she was “locked up at home” after testing positive for the coronavirus.
Elba’s announcement followed the halting of more movie productions worldwide.
Movie studio Warner Bros said on Monday it had stopped filming on the fourth instalment of the Matrix action franchise, starring Keanu Reeves, and the third Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, a spin-off of its successful Harry Potter franchise.
Trade paper Variety said Matrix was about to film in Germany and Fantastic Beasts was about to start production.
Universal Pictures, Netflix and Disney halted production of most of their live-action television shows and movies last week as the coronavirus spread around the world.