The Wire star has taken up the sport to help him get in shape for his upcoming Nelson Mandela biopic, Long Walk to Freedom, and he admits mastering his moves in the ring has been a personal goal of his for many years.
He tells New York Magazine, ""If an alien craft were to come down and go, 'We want the fittest people in the world', we'd give them a bunch of soldiers and boxers. I want to take my body there.""
Elba wants to put his training to good use and is considering filming his work outs for a documentary and organising a boxing match to raise money for poor kids in his father's native Sierra Leone.
And he insists he's not worried about ruining his good looks if he gets hit in the face - because Elba is convinced there will always be a need for actors to play less image-conscious characters.
He says, ""If I made my living off my face alone, I don't think I'd be here talking to you now. I don't have much to lose. Besides, there are characters out there that have crooked noses. I think I'll get those characters.""