Chris O’Dowd hits out at Irish actors who use American accents

Chris O'Dowd

Moone boy star Chris O’Dowd has hit out at Irish actors who play American roles and insists they should speak in their own accents.

O’Dowd plays an enforcer for a loan shark in American series Get Shorty. However, while the series is set in Las Vegas, O’Dowd didn’t feel it was necessary to play his character Miles Daly as an American.

He says actors are more believable when they are not distracted by trying to master an unfamiliar accent.

Chris O'Dowd

He said he wasn’t sure whether he would attempt to act with an American accent, but thankfully most of his characters are written as Irish anyway.

The star told GQ Magazine: ““I don’t know. I think Miles was always going to be Irish when I was cast.

“I don’t do it[American accent] a lot. I did it in Girls, and then a movie with Andie McDowell last year.

“I have a very simple rule, which is: unless there is a very real reason not to be, I want to play Irish characters.”

O’Dowd added that there are Irish people all over America and TV and movies don’t necessarily reflect that.

He said: “Because I’ve travelled around an awful lot and we’re everywhere. And we’re oddly not represented.

“Like, we are represented in terms of there’s loads of actors, but they’re all playing, you know, Americans and whatnot.

“And then from a selfish level it’s just one less thing to worry about.

“I love the way that we dealt with in Bridesmaids where we kind of just didn’t. I think Kristen [Wiig] says something like, ‘Can you be a cop in this country?’

“And I say, ‘Well, you can’t unless you’re really big and strong.’”

Get Shorty has been a roaring success with both critics and TV audiences, with O’Dowd earning an Irish Film and Television awards nomination for his performance.

However, the 40-year-old admitted that he was initially unsure about whether it was the right move for his career.

He said: “I was, to be honest, fairly sceptical going in… But I had been looking for something to stretch myself on the page.

“I’d come off the back of doing a couple of comedies and I thought it would be fun to play a character who’s physical.

“I don’t play a lot of physical characters, and that is actually more part of my personality in real life than I would probably care to admit.

“A huge part of my life growing up was as this large presence in a room. I was quite awkward.”

Written by Michael Kehoe @michaelcallingJoin our community