American TV actors face new competition from abroad
Oh, that new trend? Talent from abroad is coming here, getting cast on television shows, and adopting American accents. My personal favorite Baltimore's Finest is Domenic West playing Jimmy McNulty on The Wire. He was born and raised in England, went to college in Dublin. In an episode during the second season, he had to speak with a British accent. It sounded fake because I'm used to his American accent.
The Jimmy McNulty character might just be a trendsetter in the industry. I read an article from the Star Tribune (Minnesota) which listed others cast on new shows although the author didn't mention The Wire's leading man. (How could he not mention him?)
- On the upcoming Cashmere Mafia, the die-hard New Yorkers lead roles are played by Miranda Otto from Australia and Frances O'Connor from England.
- Journeyman's Kevin McKidd is from Scotland, not San Francisco.
- Sophia Myles from England plays a reporter on Moonlight.
- On Chuck, a government agent (USA, that is) is played by Yvonne Strzechowski, an Austrian.
- The newest Bionic Woman is Michelle Ryan from England.
- What would House be without Brit Hugh Laurie?
- The new alien in Aliens in America was imported from England to play a Pakistani here.
Why are they doing it? Well, the foreign television markets face a lot of the same problems as the American market -- those reality shows and such. Not only that, but the markets are smaller. America is the land of opportunity for these actors, all they need is the right accent. And, we're not talking that dazzling British or French accent. We're talking talk like you're from Newark or Baltimore. As the article I cited mentions, it's easier not to have to write in why a character is from abroad.
Gee, I wonder if I can go over to London and type like I'm from there to make it big in the literary world. Oh, probably not. But as long as the imported actors are believable in their roles, I don't mind this British Invasion (and other countries) at all.