Gillian Anderson - American or British accent????

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by MikeT, Aug 10, 2008.

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  1. MikeT

    MikeT Prior Forum Cretin and Current Impatient Creep Thread Starter

    New Jersey, USA
    So I finished watching the Bleak House HD-DVD I got on the cheap from DVD.CO.UK. Excellent HD-DVD and show by the way... well anyway...

    On disc one they have a 20 minute personal interview with Gillian Anderson about Bleak House (shot in 2006 I presume), and having heard interviews with Gillian before about X-Files, I was stunned to hear her talk in such a convincing and natural British accent.

    I know she grew up in England for a time, but was born in the US and probably lived more of her life in the US than in England.

    So I search the internet for interviews with Gillian Anderson, and most are from either US TV talk shows, or for publicity for the new X-Files movie. As I suspected she has no vestige of an English accent. All her interviews were in plain as day "American" accent - as natural as can be.

    I then specifically search for interviews done for British TV (around the same time as Bleak house, etc.) and lo and behold her accent is purely British, as if that is her natural speaking voice.

    Can it be that Gillian even "acts" when granting an interview, even one on a "red carpet" walking into a movie premiere? Is she that able to "fake" out her audiences so that when speaking to an American audience she puts on her American voice, and when speaking to an English audience she puts on her English voice?

    So, my real question is, WHAT DOES GILLIAN ANDERSON's REAL (natural) SPEAKING VOICE SOUND LIKE??? :confused:
  2. Drew

    Drew Senior Member

    Grand Junction, CO
    I have no idea what her real accent is, but I read recently that she spent the first 11 years of her life in England. She has also spent quite a few of her more recent years there as well. So it wouldn't surprise me if it doesn't change depending on where she is in the world in any given moment.
  3. Another Side

    Another Side Senior Member

    San Francisco
    I heard her a few years back on Graham Norton and her accent is far from convincing. I think it's just Ms. Anderson being eccentric. :shh:
  4. His Masters Vice

    His Masters Vice W.C. Fields Forever

    From about the ages of 18 months to 11 years she lived in England. I've read that when her family moved back to the US Gillian was mocked in school for her "English accent", so it's fair to assume that she had developed one. To avoid mockery she switched to a midwest accent.

    I imagine that when she visits England now she probably tends to adopt a more English sounding accent, even if it is not entirely authentic, possibly without even being aware that she's doing it. Going to school in England for several years, and listening to all that English TV and radio at the time must have had some impact on her. ;)
  5. Tuco

    Tuco Senior Member

    Pacific NW, USA
    I've sometimes wondered about this very thing.

    If one is conversant in a particular language, doesn't one try to speak with as convincing an accent as possible? So if you speak French with your best French accent when in Paris, why not do the same when speaking English in London? For some reason the former seems natural, while the latter seems forced or "fake" (at least for those of us for whom English is the native tongue).
  6. Another Side

    Another Side Senior Member

    San Francisco
    I think there's a big difference between proper pronunciation and accent subtleties, though.
  7. Record Fan

    Record Fan Forum Resident

    Germantown, TN
    I don't know what her accent is, but I'd like to give her a proper "rogering".
  8. MikeyH

    MikeyH Stamper King

    Berkeley, CA
    When we spent a couple of months in Paris we spoke English with a French accent when we came back.

    Gillian now lives in London, and has for several (8?) years .. so she'll be doing the same.
  9. detroit muscle

    detroit muscle MIA

    As someone who has moved between the US and UK my accent will change to wherever I am - According to my wife it's whoever I'm speaking to! Unlike Madonna I'm sure it is a natural adaptation to her surroundings
  10. dividebytube

    dividebytube Forum Resident

    Grand Rapids, MI
    She moved to Grand Rapids, MI after her parents returned to the states. My wife went to Catholic Central in GR and had a friend who went to school with Gillian.

    We have a nice hard flat midwestern twang up here ;)
  11. Jay F

    Jay F New Member

    Pittsburgh, PA
    You mean "fleaaatt" and "tweannnggg"?
  12. alfarkel

    alfarkel Member

    Doraville, Ga
    She discussed this with Jay Leno a few weeks back, saying she will mimic the british accent when in England and occassionally reverts to it when in the states. Also, that show was a doozy with sexual innuendo abounding - from Gillian, herself.
  13. sound chaser

    sound chaser Senior Member

    North East UK.
    Apparently Christian Bale does something similar, maybe it's catching :).
  14. Squealy

    Squealy Forum Hall Of Fame

    When he was promoting Batman Begins, he did all his interviews in an American accent because he didn't want people to be put off by the idea of a British Batman. He probably didn't worry about it this time (or did he? Haven't seen any recent interviews with him.)
  15. It's easy to fall into the accent commonly used in your surroundings, if you've been in a place for a while. About 10 years back I spent about a month in Georgia and North Carolina, and came back with a slight twang that I didn't notice until my return.
  16. DmitriKaramazov

    DmitriKaramazov Senior Member

    I still haven't recovered from those pictures of Gillian in FHM a few years ago. Wow! :love:
  17. Well then perhaps this will help?


    I think her voice is very intelligible on my JBL control 5 LCR fronts, its smoking hot.
  18. DmitriKaramazov

    DmitriKaramazov Senior Member

    YIKES! "Agent Scully, the truth is out there!"
    wayne66 and dlokazip like this.
  19. Or Agent stark naked!:laugh:
  20. I spent a few months in Santa Barbara when I was younger. When I got back to Blighty I caught myself doing that rising inflection thing at the end of sentences so beloved of our friends in the colonies. So much so that my English mates had to ask "are you asking a question or making a statement?".

    Anyway I was glad that this nasty affliction soon dissapeared after a few days speaking the Queens English!
  21. Another Side

    Another Side Senior Member

    San Francisco
  22. Her voice is a cross between American with one nose unblocked and one clear so that funky cool English accent comes out.

    Oh, so this took place back around 2002 if Graham hadn’t said Attack of the Clones, I wouldn’t have guessed.

    This one looks a bit later, it’s a very short one, but then again Graham does have a short one.:D
    Gillian Anderson on Graham Norton - Part 3

    Hmmm, this is longer one!:D
    Gillian Anderson on Graham Norton - Part 5
  23. Another Side

    Another Side Senior Member

    San Francisco
    :laugh: I saw this when it aired.

    IIRC, Norton asks her why she seems to have an English accent during the interview.
  24. AH On Vibes

    AH On Vibes New Member

    So. Cal.

    So does Madonna! :angel::D
  25. DmitriKaramazov

    DmitriKaramazov Senior Member

    Maybe X-Files I Want to Believe bombed because no one could believe Scully with a British accent?? :sigh:
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