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

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Tom-Hardy-Taboo.jpg
Tom Hardy on How He Prepared for His Role in ‘Taboo’
"I really think about acting in two different parts. There’s convincing and not convincing acting." - Tom Hardy
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/greta-gerwig.jpg
Greta Gerwig’s Advice to New Actors: “Make your own things”
"When I suddenly feel like I can't find my footing, I listen to a song or look at a photograph or read an essay, and reconnect with what I felt the essence of the character was." - Greta Gerwig
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/viggo-mortensen-captain-fantastic.jpg
Viggo Mortensen on How He Became an Actor
"It didn’t occur to me to try acting it until I was, for an actor, relatively pretty old — 22 or 23." - Viggo Mortensen
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Michael-Fassbender.jpg
Michael Fassbender on Finding a Character: “If I can make them logical to myself, then I apply them, and that’s really it”
Fassbender talks about his parents' concern about his action aspirations and why he reject the idea that he is an "intelligent actor."
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Felicity-Jones-Rogue-One.jpg
Felicity Jones on How She Finds Inspiration For Her Characters
"As much as possible, I'm trying to understand who the characters are and why they're making the decisions that they're making." - Felicity Jones