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An honest question for British members

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posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:32 PM
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Before I get to the question, I'd like to say that the question its self might seem stupid to you but it's something I've been curious about for a long time. Please be kind.

Okay, with that disclaimer out of the way, let's get on with it. How easy is it for British people to fake an American accent? A lot of words are pronounced differently depending if the speaker is British or American. Aluminum is one, for example.
The reason I'm asking this is I was watching Horns last night, starring Daniel Radcliffe. It took me a moment to realize who I was seeing. He was also in Harry Potter as Harry Potter. What threw me off was his using an American accent. I've seen this in a lot of other things, too. One is The Walking Dead. When I heard Andrew Lincoln speak outside of the show, I was stunned. I thought for sure he was American, but nope. He's not.
Should I be impressed that British actors are able to mimic an American accent so convincingly or is it easy to do? Like I said, it sounds like a dumb question but it is out of honest curiosity.




posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:39 PM
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I've always found it difficult to do a U.S accent.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:39 PM
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originally posted by: Skid Mark
Before I get to the question, I'd like to say that the question its self might seem stupid to you but it's something I've been curious about for a long time. Please be kind.

Okay, with that disclaimer out of the way, let's get on with it. How easy is it for British people to fake an American accent? A lot of words are pronounced differently depending if the speaker is British or American. Aluminum is one, for example.
The reason I'm asking this is I was watching Horns last night, starring Daniel Radcliffe. It took me a moment to realize who I was seeing. He was also in Harry Potter as Harry Potter. What threw me off was his using an American accent. I've seen this in a lot of other things, too. One is The Walking Dead. When I heard Andrew Lincoln speak outside of the show, I was stunned. I thought for sure he was American, but nope. He's not.
Should I be impressed that British actors are able to mimic an American accent so convincingly or is it easy to do? Like I said, it sounds like a dumb question but it is out of honest curiosity.


I personally cringe when I see a British actor trying to do an American actor or verse visa.

Although there are exeptions. Brad Pitt in the movie "snatch" as a pikey and Hugh laurie in that American doctor thing he did.

I am sure more will follow but on the whole it's easy.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:41 PM
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I find I slip out of a northern accent frequently, whereas a southern accent is fairly easy to maintain, my hillbilly is exquisite.


I think the more exaggerated the accent the easier it seems to be maintained.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:42 PM
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originally posted by: CharlieSpeirs
I've always found it difficult to do a U.S accent.

Thanks. It's one of those little things that nag at my mind.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:45 PM
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a reply to: nonspecific

What makes you cringe, exactly? Is it that you think they sound horrible or is it the fact that they're attempting it.
Now, if it's Kevin Costner in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves I can understand it. That was horrible.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:45 PM
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originally posted by: Skid Mark

originally posted by: CharlieSpeirs
I've always found it difficult to do a U.S accent.

Thanks. It's one of those little things that nag at my mind.


It is hard in my opinion as regional dialect is so varied.

Murrica is a big place and accents are varied.

I hail from the midlands in the UK and 150 miles in any direction and everyone says they cannot understand a word I am saying.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:46 PM
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originally posted by: DAZ21
I find I slip out of a northern accent frequently, whereas a southern accent is fairly easy to maintain, my hillbilly is exquisite.


I think the more exaggerated the accent the easier it seems to be maintained.

"Hillbilly" is easy to pick up for me. I don't know why. If I'm around people that talk like that I do it without even realizing it.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:47 PM
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originally posted by: Skid Mark
a reply to: nonspecific

What makes you cringe, exactly? Is it that you think they sound horrible or is it the fact that they're attempting it.
Now, if it's Kevin Costner in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves I can understand it. That was horrible.


The nail has been hit firmly on the head with that one mate.

Simply embaressing.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:50 PM
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originally posted by: nonspecific

originally posted by: Skid Mark

originally posted by: CharlieSpeirs
I've always found it difficult to do a U.S accent.

Thanks. It's one of those little things that nag at my mind.


It is hard in my opinion as regional dialect is so varied.

Murrica is a big place and accents are varied.

I hail from the midlands in the UK and 150 miles in any direction and everyone says they cannot understand a word I am saying.

Thanks. Yes, the accents here are varied. Take people from Maine, Texas, Minnesots, and California for instance. They all sound very different. Add people from various Indian reservations and it's something new entirely.
You also answered another question I didn't think to ask. That is how varied accents are with British people. I take it that they're just as (if not more so) varied as those of Americans. Am I right?



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:52 PM
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Jason stathams American accent cracks me up its awful... and the black guy from the ocean 11 films doing a British accent. . Lol.. what a joke.

That being said.. i find an American accent quite easy and convincing.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:53 PM
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My American accent is pants I cant help doing the usual thing of over accentuating words like better. I was amazed when I learned Damian Lewis was British in his portrayal of Richard Winters in Band Of Brothers. I was also impressed by the British accent of Renee Zellwegger as Bridget Jones.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:54 PM
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a reply to: Skid Mark

I'm from Phoenix, try an American Phoenician accent. I didn't know I had an accent until I visited the (US) Midwest.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:58 PM
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a reply to: Skid Mark

Definitely varied in the UK, many Americans think we all talk like the queen or from London. In fact in London alone depending on the area the accents change. But every 50 miles or so the accent changes noticeably.

There are some dialects that Americans would struggle with, like harsh brummie, scouse and geordie.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 05:59 PM
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a reply to: nonspecific

I agree. That was a cringe worthy performance.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 06:00 PM
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a reply to: Skid Mark

For such a small country the accents here are very varied even roughly 20mls in each direction from my home in Cheshire to Stoke On Trent or Manchester or Liverpool. All very distinct.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 06:01 PM
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originally posted by: Misterlondon
Jason stathams American accent cracks me up its awful... and the black guy from the ocean 11 films doing a British accent. . Lol.. what a joke.

That being said.. i find an American accent quite easy and convincing.

Some said it's hard. You say easy. I take it that it depends on the individual.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 06:01 PM
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a reply to: Skid Mark
Before the Beatles came along, British singers used to aspire to sound American, and they got mocked as having a "Mid-Atlantic" accent.

I think the answer will be that actors are trained to vary accents, and a good actor will probably manage very well. The rest of us could only manage a vague drawl, which would signal "American" to fellow-countrymen, but would not convince genuine Americans.
Exactly the same as the other way round. Some Americans could sound convincingly British when that was called for, others could only produce a caricature.
For example (unkind critics would say) Dick van Dyke in "Mary Poppins".



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 06:03 PM
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originally posted by: macpdm
My American accent is pants I cant help doing the usual thing of over accentuating words like better. I was amazed when I learned Damian Lewis was British in his portrayal of Richard Winters in Band Of Brothers. I was also impressed by the British accent of Renee Zellwegger as Bridget Jones.

Pants! I never heard that one before. I haven't seen Band of Brothers but wanted to. Now I'll look it up. Thanks.



posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 06:03 PM
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originally posted by: DAZ21
a reply to: Skid Mark

Definitely varied in the UK, many Americans think we all talk like the queen or from London. In fact in London alone depending on the area the accents change. But every 50 miles or so the accent changes noticeably.

There are some dialects that Americans would struggle with, like harsh brummie, scouse and geordie.


And then theres the Scots, I have friends that are Scottish that I honestly have to translate for.

Not just accent but words are different and that's a few hundred miles.



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