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IDRIS ELBA split up with his wife after cruel pals told him the marriage would ruin his career because it was not “the right look”, his ex has revealed.Heartbroken Sonya Hamlin was dumped by the Luther star just six weeks after tying the knot.Speaking out for the first time, the lawyer told The Sun on Sunday: “We were madly in love. But Idris was getting a lot of flak for getting married and being married.
“Everyone was like ‘Dude, you’re the hottest sex symbol’.
“I know people were telling him he was going to ruin his career. He was being told it was an important part of his career to be a single sex symbol in Hollywood and that being married would damage that. Some people used to say, ‘Why her?’
“It wasn’t the right look, that’s what they were telling him. It used to upset him. He was like, ‘Why don’t people just let me be happy?’ ”
Londoner Idris, now 43, had finished his breakthrough role in the US, The Wire, and was sifting through movie offers when the pair met in 2006.
It was three years after his divorce from his first wife with whom he has a daughter Isan, now 15. He and Sonya married three months later.
The two were introduced by a mutual friend in her hometown Baltimore, Maryland — the gritty city where The Wire was filmed — but bonded over their mutual love of London where Sonya, now 44, had lived as a student.
She recalled: “When I first met him, I told him how I used to stay in Notting Hill Gate and would go to this wine bar and he knew exactly where it was because they played reggae and he loves reggae.
“He was like, ‘What do you know about that?’ That was how we hit it off! And he always used to make sure I had English chocolate, I love chocolate. I lived on it when I was in London.
“He would always find me Smarties. Even with his busy schedule he would do it.”
Sharing never-before-seen photos of her and Idris together, Sonya also described the chemistry when she first met the actor, currently providing the voice of the tiger Shere Khan in Disney’s remake of The Jungle Book.
She said: “We got on from the moment we met, we meshed very well. He’s not shy and neither am I and we fell very much in love with each other.
“We went on normal dates — dinner, movies and we used to just have fun in the house. We used to always coordinate our outfits when we dressed.
“And he was a very good cook and loves cooking Caribbean food.”
In April 2006 the couple travelled to Las Vegas to watch a boxing title showdown between American fighters Floyd Mayweather and Zab Judah with some friends.
During the trip they decided to marry on a whim and wed the day after the match at the Little White Wedding Chapel.
Sonya said: “We were just chilling on sun loungers early in the day by the pool.
“I know I was drinking a mimosa and we were talking and were both in a great mood. We had talked about marriage before and how we would want to keep it plain and simple.