We all seem to think that all the actors with such a perfect American accent are indeed American. Wrong! Many of them are British, and we didn’t have a clue.
According to the Dark Knight, “I was born in Wales but I’m not Welsh. I’m English.” On-screen it is difficult to tell that the Oscar-nominated actor has an accent. Bale was born in Haverfordwest to a South-African born father and a mother who worked as a circus performer. After the release of his first film, Empire of the Sun, in 1987, he no longer wanted to pursue acting; “I enjoyed making the film, but I was shocked when I received all the attention when I got home to Bournemouth.”
Perhaps one of the most shocking names on our list is Charlie Hunnam. Charlie rose to fame, quite drastically, after the premiere of Sons of Anarchy. He played Jackson “Jax” Teller, Vice President of a gangster motorcycle club, until the series end after 7 seasons but it was his role on Queer as Folk that gave him some serious street cred as an actor. Charlie is originally from Newcastle. Ironically enough, Charlie’s father was a legitimate gangster. If that isn’t fate, we don’t know what is.
Kiefer Sutherland isn’t guilty of hiding a British accent off-screen – he’s only a Brit by accident. His father, Donald Sutherland, and his mother were on location in London at the time he was born and now he’s considered a legal Brit by the English media and BBC America. He is ironically playing the American President of the United Stated in The Designated Survivor.
Hugh Laurie, one of the great British talents, was born in Oxford, Oxfordshire and grew up with an Olympian father. He became a household name in America after starring as Dr. House on the medical drama that drove fans crazy. It’s not easy for a Brit to play an American and Laurie has said so in his own words; “The great trap for non-American actors trying to play Americans, I think, is to start thinking of American-ness as a characteristic. It isn’t. It is no more a character trait than height. It is just a physical fact, and that’s all there is to it.”
For fans who followed the career of Rosamund Pike before she broke out in 2014’s Gone Girl, it shouldn’t be so surprising that she’s an accented Brit. Rosamund’s acting career first took off alongside Keira Knightley in Pride & Prejudice and then again, in the James Bond film, Die Another Day. She’s originally from London and began her career as a stage actress, working in productions like Romeo & Juliet and Skylight.
Rosamund in Total Film’s April 2018 issue 💞 I totally admire her, she’s so different to all the other actors. Just an outstanding personality 😍 So sad that it didn’t work out with Mary Poppins, I bet she would be amazing for the role! Anyways, congratulations to Emily Blunt who got the role ☺️I Can’t wait for her upcoming movies “a private war” and “Marie Curie” 🙈, even though I’m going to be very sad when she takes her “proper break” 😝 #totalfilmmagazine #rosamundpike #7daysinentebbe @totalfilm
Ed Westwick shot to superstardom when he took on the controversial, yet super loved, Gossip Girl character, Chuck Bass. As dreamy as he is and as naughty as his public persona is, many fans never realized that Ed Westwick is a Brit. Aside from his Gossip Girl credentials, Ed has a collection of film projects under his belt, like J. Edgar and the 2013 reboot of Romeo and Juliet.
Mulligan was born in London and spent some time growing up in Germany before she acted in Dr. Who, Pride & Prejudice and An Education, which landed her an Oscar nomination. She then landed the highly coveted role of the iconic American character Daisy Buchanan in The Great Gatsby.
Before rising to international fame as Michael Scofield in the hit series Prison Break, Wentworth Miller was born in the little town of Chipping Norton and moved to Brooklyn when he was 1 year old.
Born in London, Alfred Molina has had many acting roles without his natural accent: the Spanish Bishop Aringarosa in The Da Vinci Code, Dr. Otto Octavius in Spiderman 2, the Persian Sheik Amar in Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, and the French Comte de Reynaud in Chocolat.
Rebecca Hall may have gotten your attention in films like Vicky Cristina Barcelona and The Town, but she isn’t actually American… She was born in London and attended Cambridge University before dropping out in 2002 to pursue a career in acting. You’ve also seen Rebecca rocking an American accent in films like Iron Man 3, Transcendence, and The Prestige.
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