Maxim is known for its scantily clad Hollywood starlets on the cover, which is why the world was a bit surprised to see actor Idris Elba on the cover of the September fashion issue. Wearing a black leopard-print coat, the handsome British actor is the first solo male in history to grace the front of the magazine.

The magazine, known for scantily-clad beauties, picked hunky Idris to be their first-ever male cover star Photo: Maxim

Maxim editor-in-chief Kate Lanphear told Racked: "This is the very first time, and there was no one else in the world more bad-ass than Idris."

In the feature, Idris talks about life, sex, movies and his passions: auto-racing and DJing. He also addresses those rumors that he's going to play the next James Bond after Daniel Craig – something he somewhat put to rest.

"If I were the Bond producers and everyone was pointing me toward one actor, what's the surprise in that?" he told the magazine. "Honestly, it's one of those things that if it should happen, it would be a self-fulfilling prophecy; it would be the will of a nation."

Real-life action man Idris played down talk of being the next James Bond Photo: Getty Images

Though he may not be taking on the role of the secret agent, the 43-year-old's history-making cover comes after several Bond Girls have been featured on the cover. Olga Kurylenko, Bérénice Marlohe and Denise Richards are just some of the beauties who have posed for the magazine over the years.

Multifaceted Idris has a number of passions – he's an actor, race car driver and a star DJ Photo: Getty Images

Prior to 007 rumors, the London-born star made a name for himself on The Wire and also starred as Nelson Mandela in Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom. He is set to take on a role in the next Star Trek movie.

Next month, he'll be seen as an African child army leader in Cary Fukunaga’s Beasts of No Nation, a performance that’s already gaining award buzz.

Get more from Idris in the video below:

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