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#2254 - 05/12/00 04:36 AM 'Nice Girl'
shanks Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/16/00
Posts: 1004
Loc: London, UK
Last night I saw a drama called 'Nice Girl' on BBC2. It was done in the style of a documentary and was, in my opinion, the best thing the Beeb's had since the last Ab Fab (though I might make an exception in the case of 'Have I got News for You').

My question, such as it is, is to any others who may have watched it, becasue when I first started watching it seemed to me that the characters were Liverpudlian (the diagnostic "Ohrrright?" at the end of questions and so on), but as I watched more, it seemed as if they were almost entirely Welsh. The only geographic cue was the final shot, in which the protagonist was sitting at Abergavon station, waiting for a train.

Can anyone set me right on the accents, mixtures of accents, or varieties of accents used in the show?

cheer

the sunshine warrior


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#2255 - 05/12/00 05:13 AM Re: 'Nice Girl'
jmh Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1981
I'll look out for it. What do you think of the accents in "Goodness Gracious Me" - do you think that is exportable?

On the same subject. I have occasionally seen "Frasier" and have been appalled by the presence of a female character who purports to be English - her accent is like nothing I have ever heard. I've been told that it is meant to be Manchester (in the North West of England) but as I come from that area I have to disagree.

Even Helen Baxendale didn't sound her normal self when she was in Friends - perhaps she was told by the producers to sound more "English"!

On the other hand, I was told recently in the USA (rather sheepishly) that I sounded just like Elizabeth Corday in ER. I wasn't sure if it was a compliment but it's fine by me, bit of a ladette too!



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#2256 - 05/12/00 06:18 AM Re: 'Nice Girl'
shanks Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/16/00
Posts: 1004
Loc: London, UK
Agree - 'Goddness Gracious Me' is one of the most hilarious shows I've seen of late. (Especially resonant for me since I grew up in India.) Not sure if the accents and cultural attitudes will export easily - but then the US has a sizable contingent of Indian expatriates so who knows?

cheer

the sunshine warrior


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#2257 - 05/13/00 08:07 AM Re: 'Nice Girl'
paulb Offline
addict

Registered: 03/17/00
Posts: 460
Loc: Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Shanks - I'll second you on "Goodness gracious me" - a very funny series. Particularly the skit about the burgled house where the burglars had got in through the cow flap!


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#2258 - 05/14/00 03:18 AM Goodness Gracious Me
jmh Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1981
I like the one where they go out, after a few pints, for an "English".


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#2259 - 05/14/00 02:03 PM Re: 'Nice Girl'
tsuwm Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 10523
Loc: this too shall pass
>>On the same subject. I have occasionally seen "Frasier" and have been appalled by the presence of a woman who purports to be English - her accent is like nothing I have ever heard. I've been told that it is meant to be Manchester (in the North West of England) but as I come from that area I have to disagree.<<

Jane Leeves was born in London and appeared on British TV (Benny Hill, in non-speaking roles) but left for the US as a teenager and has thus been corrupted by US TV. I heard her being interviewed very recently and she sounds just the same as on 'Frasier'.


http://members.aol.com/tsuwm/

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#2260 - 05/14/00 05:07 PM Re: 'Nice Girl'
jmh Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1981
Regarding "Daphne" - it is quite difficult for someone from London to do a good North West accent, and adding in her mid-Atlantic overtones makes it even harder. I suppose its no different to someone from Sydney doing South Australian or from Dallas doing Bostonian. I think that is why Meryl Streep did so well, she always sounded exactly right. Even Gwyneth Paltrow seems pretty good at sounding British (although I read somewhere that she hates the food here and longs to get back to the USA after her filming is over).

Do any British actors do good American accents - what about Michael Caine's most recent film - I heard that was meant to be quite good (I haven't seen it yet)?


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#2261 - 05/18/00 03:59 AM Re: 'Nice Girl'
Rubrick Offline
addict

Registered: 05/18/00
Posts: 679
Loc: Somewhere outside New York
Do any British actors do good American accents - what about Michael Caine's most recent film - I heard that was meant
to be quite good (I haven't seen it yet)?

It's interesting you ask this because it is something that I have looked out for for the past few years. Michael Caine was lauded for his performance in 'The Cider House Rules' but the critics (and , I presume, most New England locals) cringed at his accent which lapsed back into East London at every phrase.

Those that (in my opinion) have done more than an ample job of it are listed as follows:

Bob Hoskins for 'Sweet Liberty' in which he played a film scriptwriter who completely fictitionalises an important historical work on the American war of Independence written by college professor Alan Alda (who, ironically, wrote the actual screenplay for the film). The film also stars Michal Caine (playing a near miss of himself) and Michelle Pfeiffer.

Bob Hoskins again for 'Who framed Roger Rabbit'. Seems that the husky Cockney accent is a close one to 'da mob' accent.

Ben Chaplin for 'The thin Red Line'. A lot of people thought he was a descendent of Charlie and, thus, American. Ben is actually English born and bred and the names are coincidental.

Liam Neeson for many, many American films before he got the part of Schindler. Coming from Ballymena, Co. Antrim his deep, husky voice is highly adaptable for many foreign accents (though the Cork accent of Michael Collins was not one of them!). Most of his American film parts were of Deep South characters because their accents evolved from the deep Ulster accents that are so familiar.

Bit of trivia: I was surprised that the majority of my Continental European friends didn't know that Liam Neeson was Irish. They presumed he was Dutch, German, Danish etc. because his accent in 'Schindler's List' is, apparently, faultless. I am gob-smacked (there's a word for AWAD! ;^) ).


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#2262 - 05/18/00 04:22 AM Re: 'Nice Girl'
Philip Davis Offline
journeyman

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 81
I'd heard quite mixed reviews of Caine's New England accent. It's certainly stilted and strange and not the least like the modern yankee accent but someone suggested that it was very like an older form used by some in New England. I am always amazed when looking at documentary films from the thirties, or even the fifties, how much the various british accents have changed in vocabulary, tone, rhythm and emphasis in a relatively short time.

Personal I think Caine has a very good ear and it is likely that his accent is accurate, if obsolete (depending on the quality of the dialogue coach, of course).

However, when discussing actors accents, nothing can ever compair to the excellent cockney of Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins.

me ol' bamboo
strike a light guvnor.


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#2263 - 05/18/00 05:53 AM Re: Goodies and Baddies
jmh Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1981
Pause for quick swoon. A great Irish export - may the Force be with you.

I was listening to a radio programme about Hollywood. They thought there were no glamorous actors anymore - only George Cluny.

Wasn't it usual to only allow British actors to play baddies, which is how Michael Caine made his living. It even works in cartoons - look at "Scar" in The Lion King.


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