Pin It

Lennie James talks Using Accents and the One Time He’s Been “Frightened About a Job”

lennie-james-line-of-dutyBritish actor Lennie James could teach a master class on accents, after sounding like an authentic American in shows like Jericho and Hung.

“You don’t always want the character’s voice to be too much like your own,” he told Slate.com.  “When I’m playing an American, I don’t play Lennie with an American accent.  They’re American characters who look like me, but they have different voices.  For Tony [Gates, his role in BBC’s Line of Duty] the voice was closer to mine, but I still tried to be aware of certain things that he would say in a way that I wouldn’t.”

James admits he doesn’t really choose projects depending on the country they’re representing.  “I’ve worked in the theater, television, and films.  A five-hour TV series is certainly more time than a character I’d be playing in a film.  We did four months on Line of Duty from beginning to end, and that would be a long theater run.  Also, a BBC hour is longer than an American television hour.”

“I will say that when I first came to the States to work on Jericho, that was the only time that I’ve ever been frightened about a job, because in America they tell stories over such a long time, and I was petrified that I’d get bored,” he said. “I spent a lot of time in the writers’ room trying to make sure that whatever stuff they came up with would keep me interested.”

Leave a Reply

Latest Videos

The Cast of ‘Mad Men’ on the Final Season and More
Though the AMC television series Mad Men might not carry the same cultural weight that it did a few years ago (splitting your final season over two years might do that to you), the second half of the show’s final season is expected to be full of powerful performances from its ensemble cast. With the […]
Watch: Ron Perlman on His Father’s Influence on His Early Career
Ron Perlman is a prolific actor, and he has also lent his distinctive voice to a number of projects in film and television — including the new animated film The Book of Life. One of the reasons that Perlman works so hard is not only because he loves being an actor, but because of what […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/cate-blanchett-asks-graduating-s.jpg
Cate Blanchett Asks Graduating Students a Heavy Question: “What the hell can you do with an arts degree?”
“What the hell can you do with an arts degree?” Many actors ask themselves that when they find themselves struggling to make it in Hollywood while saddled with student loans. It was Cate Blanchett who posed that question recently to graduating students at Macquarie University in Sydney where she received an honorary doctorate degree. The […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/matthew-mcconaughey-rallies-his.jpg
Matthew McConaughey Rallies his Alma Mater Football Team to Victory with the ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ Chant
Oscar winner Matthew McConaughey delivered a different kind of speech two weeks ago when he spoke with the Texas Longhorns football team after their close 20-17 loss to UCLA. The moment was a bit odd, but hilarious at the same time. Coach Charlie Strong was the one who invited the Dallas Buyers Club star to inspire the […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/watch-anna-gunn-reveals-her-awkw.jpg
Watch: Anna Gunn Reveals Her Awkward ‘Breaking Bad’ Audition Details
Though Breaking Bad was obviously a career highpoint for every actor involved, they all must move on to their next projects (except for the few who are involved in the Breaking Bad spinoff, Better Call Saul). This includes Anna Gunn, who portrayed Walter White’s wife Skyler on the award-winning series series. Gunn’s new series, the […]