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Aml Ameen – how the world teaches you who you are

For Idris Elba’s directorial debut YARDIE, actor Aml Ameen (Sense8, Kidulthood) went back to his family’s Jamaican roots, learning patois and sound clash chat—using method acting to become “D” – a lost soul on a quest for revenge. The process changed him forever.
Key Takeaways
  • Is ambition incompatible with peace?
  • How does coming face to face with death change you?
  • Slam poetry, singing, brilliant accents and more from Aml in this deep and beautiful conversation about art, life, and history.

Aml Ameen and Jason Gots at Big Think

They say Confucius said “Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.” I did the research. Confucius probably didn’t say that. But whoever said it was right — revenge bites back.

Victor Headley’s 1992 book YARDIE launched a genre of Jamaican pulp fiction. It’s the story of a life driven and destroyed by revenge, from the Kingston gang wars of the 70’s to the international drug trade of the 80’s. And it’s the basis for Idris Elba’s directorial debut — a movie of the same name staring my guest today, actor Aml Ameen.

YARDIE, the movie, captures a slice of Jamaican life and musical culture you don’t often see on screen — the clash of rival sound systems and DJs at dance parties. And as the main character, D, Aml captures the complexities of a man haunted by his brother’s murder and torn between the paths of righteousness and damnation.

Surprise conversation starters in this episode:

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