Question for Brits...

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by Mem, Aug 5, 2007.

  1. Mem

    Mem
    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Messages:
    8,087
    Likes Received:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    FL
    Which American actress has the best British accent?

    I think that Toni Collette has the best American accent in films of any British actress. I love to watch her, even in bad movies, just to hear her speak.

    Also, do you think it is harder for Americans to do English accents or the English to do American accents?
     
  2. SpoiledPrincess

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2006
    Messages:
    8,167
    Likes Received:
    29
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    england
    Toni Collette is Australian, she does do good accents in my view. I think Gwyneth Paltrow has pulled off a convincing English accent in Sliding Doors and in Emma, I think it's harder for Americans to do English accents because I rarely hear them do Brit accents I find convincing, but Americans could also find our actors doing their accents unconvincing. However I have heard it rumoured that people thought Stephen Fry was American when he did house. Rachel Griffiths is Australian and she took a good stab at a Welsh accent in Very Annie Mary.
     
  3. Beanie

    Verified Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2007
    Messages:
    805
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    194
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    South wales, UK
    Verified:
    Photo
    It is rare to hear an american with a convinceing british accent, especially since there are hundereds of accents that are "british" but most americans seem to think every one from britain, talks very poshly, oh well.
     
  4. Mem

    Mem
    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Messages:
    8,087
    Likes Received:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    FL
    Wow, I always thought that Toni Collete was English. I think Gwyneth did a good accent in Shakespeare in Love. Also since most movies are Hollywood movies there is not as big of a chance for American actors to do English accents unless it's a period piece.

    I just saw the Island and Ewan McGrregor's accent was off.

    Gary Oldman does great accents too.

    Charlize Theron is South African (she even speaks a dialect) , but she always speeks in an American accent , even in interviews.


    The Queen of all accents is Meryl Streep from my home state of NJ.
     
  5. Mem

    Mem
    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Messages:
    8,087
    Likes Received:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    FL
    When I used to watch Absolutely Fabulous (one of the greatest all time shows) There was a female (secretary I think) with a cockney accent. I could not understand a word she said.
     
  6. Yorkie

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Messages:
    3,024
    Albums:
    3
    Likes Received:
    102
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Yorkshire, UK
    People thought Hugh Laurie was American,I don't think Stephen (he's the tall one :smile: ) could ever disguise his accent.
    I can't remember hearing Meryl Streep do a British accent but I don't think she'd have any trouble with it.
     
  7. Mem

    Mem
    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Messages:
    8,087
    Likes Received:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    FL
    I don't know if you guys have the show "Family Guy" in England, but the guy that does the little boy Stewie (with an adult Brit accent) does it very well.
     
  8. B_NineInchCock_160IQ

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2006
    Messages:
    6,378
    Likes Received:
    11
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    where the sun never sets
    I think it's probably easier to nail a US accent because American accents have become largely very homogenized. Though there are still distinct accents all through the American south, New Orleans, Boston, New York, the northwestesn states, etc... if you can approximate the Californian/Hollywood/news media accent that most people are most familiar with, even if it's a little muddled, you can still sound convincing as many Americans have somewhat muddled accents themselves, either the result of moving around or trying to sound closer to the homogenized accent. Also the country is so big I don't think most Americans consider themselves thoroughly familiar with every different regional accent here. If an actor's accent is a bit off it may not even register.

    Still, I do often catch actors like Stephen Fry, Russel Crowe, or Cary Elwes slipping when they try to sound American, particularly in scenes where their characters get angry or agitated and start talking fast. Sometimes they mess up their vowels then.
     
  9. Yorkie

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Messages:
    3,024
    Albums:
    3
    Likes Received:
    102
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Yorkshire, UK
    The secretary (Bubble) was played by Jane Horrocks.She has a Lancashire accent.Bob Hoskins accent is cockney.
    We do have Family Guy here but I haven't seen much of it.
     
  10. Mem

    Mem
    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Messages:
    8,087
    Likes Received:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    FL
    No, it wasn't Bubble, it was somoene else in the office a lady with brown hair and I know a cockney accent (I think the character's name was Magda) .
     
  11. Principessa

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2006
    Messages:
    19,494
    Likes Received:
    28
    Gender:
    Female
    Hugh Laurie whom I first fell in love with when he did Peter's Friends, does a rather good American accent. I actually lived near Princeton for a bit and he actually does sound like the people from that area.
     
  12. Yorkie

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Messages:
    3,024
    Albums:
    3
    Likes Received:
    102
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Yorkshire, UK
    Am I missing something? When has Stephen Fry ever tried to do an American accent ? The occasional comedy sketch maybe...
     
  13. ManlyBanisters

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2007
    Messages:
    12,807
    Likes Received:
    8
    Actually Stephen Fry is nearly as good as Laurie with accents. He's particularly good at various regional accents from around Britain but I have heard do various american accents and they sound good to my ear.

    I don't think Stewie sounds English - I thnk he sounds American - I thought he was meant to be Bostonian or similar.

    Getting all nationalistic here cos I'm home but NOBODY in the world can do a decent Irish accent until they have lived here for at least a while.

    Look, for example, at the horror that was Brad Pitt in Devil's Own (or Snatch for that matter), Richard Gere in The Jackal, that bloody woman - what'shername, in Ronin - I could go on to the true pits of Derby O'Gill and the Little People - but I really would rather not. I defy any of you to come up with more than 5 Brits / Americans (and I want video / audio clips) who can do a decent Irish accent.

    Paul Whitehouse is one I can think of - Alan Rickman did a sterling job in Michael Collins - either Alistair McGowan or Jon Culshaw (can't remember which) does a good Terry Wogan - but beyond that I'm kind of at a loss...
     
  14. SpoiledPrincess

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2006
    Messages:
    8,167
    Likes Received:
    29
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    england
    It's late, I'm practically senile, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, even the names are almost identical :)
     
  15. B_NineInchCock_160IQ

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2006
    Messages:
    6,378
    Likes Received:
    11
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    where the sun never sets
    yes I meant Hugh Laurie as well. I didn't think Stephy Fry sounded right.
     
  16. submit452

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Messages:
    2,167
    Albums:
    3
    Likes Received:
    366
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Louisville (KY, US)
    Magda the magazine editor was played by Kathy Burke. And the best british actor to do an American accent was Christian Bale he was dead on in BATMAN BEGINS/THE DARK KNIGHT. Since I'm American I feel that it's very easy for Brits to speak like an american since they are attuned to language and pronunciation than americans are we generally speak in a laid back lazy way and the British are taught to speak precisely more than in the US.
     
  17. Mem

    Mem
    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Messages:
    8,087
    Likes Received:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    FL
    I actually agree with you on something. People talk about the Jersey accent. ("I'm from Joisey") But that is not the norm here. Maybe in urban areas such as Jersey City and for lower class people. The other day I spoke to someone who said soder instad of soda. I asked if he was from New York, but he was always from NJ. I do notice that blue-collar Italians in NJ do have a distinct NJ accent. Plus where did Bruce Springsteen and John BonJovi get a southern accent from?

    One of the all time bad accents in movies is Uma Therman from the movie Hysterical Blindness (she plays it like a parody of a bad NJ accent.) Plus she was too old for the part.

    Russel Crowe did a great accent in A Beautiful Mind (a movie set in NJ)
     
  18. SpoiledPrincess

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2006
    Messages:
    8,167
    Likes Received:
    29
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    england
    If you say something wrong people will often follow what you say, once at work when it was my birthday we get computer updates which we all have to date and sign, I put down my signature then 30/8/58, everyone else put 58 on it too, it was about the fifteenth person to sign it who noticed.

    I think Christian Bale is one of those actors who will come to be thought of as America, Liz Taylor is more american than errrm apple pie.
     
  19. Mem

    Mem
    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Messages:
    8,087
    Likes Received:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    FL
    well take the word "butter" for example. Americans say Budder and the Brits say Buttah. We don't pronouce out t's in some words and they don't pronouce their R's.
     
  20. Yorkie

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Messages:
    3,024
    Albums:
    3
    Likes Received:
    102
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Yorkshire, UK
    I'd say another factor is that we spend far more time watching American tv and movies than Americans spend watching UK output.It's easier to pick up the accent when you're hearing it all the time.
     
Draft saved Draft deleted