11 actors you might not have known were putting on accents

What do Doctor Who, Ygritte and Steve Compston have in common?


Martin Compston

You probably know Martin Compston as the cockney copper in Line of Duty. Detective Steve Arnott is south London through and through but Compston actually hails from Inverclyde in Scotland – and he has a broad Scottish accent to boot, as shown in new ITV thriller In Plain Sight.


David Tennant

Scottish? Tennant might hail from Bathgate but you’d be forgiven for not noticing during his time flying that Tardis…


Damian Lewis

This Britain-born actor convinced countless telly fans with his impressive American accent in Homeland and Billions, but he was actually born and raised in North London.


Peter Dinklage

British, right? No. Tyrion might sound like he hails from New Milton but he’s actually from New Jersey, America. Where he still lives, speaking in a very American accent.


Rose Leslie

If you don’t know that, contrary to what her roles in Game of Thrones and Downton Abbey would have you believe, 29-year-old Leslie actually has the kind of accent the Queen would be proud of, you know nothing.


Kevin McKidd

Dr Owen Hunt. Trauma surgeon, formally with the United States Army. Very, very American, right? Wrong! Kevin McKidd actually hails from Elgin, Moray in Scotland. Though he does live in LA, so you’d be forgiven for not knowing about his celtic heritage…


Ed Westwick

Ed Westwick is synonymous with upper class New Yorker Chuck Bass, the millionaire heir with the soft and seriously seductive speaking voice. But it’s not his real accent at all. 29-year-old Westwick was born in Hammersmith, London.


Matthew Rhys

Americans, Brothers and Sisters… Rhys’ American accent is so convincing we had almost no idea he’s actually from Cardiff. In real life (i.e. not on the telly) he has a lovely Welsh inflection.


Hugh Laurie

We know Oxford-born Hugh Laurie is as British as British can be, but his portrayal of Head of Diagnostic Medicine Dr Gregory in long-running USA medical drama House was so convincing plenty of his American fans have no idea he’s not a citizen of the United States.


Alan Cumming

Love Eli Gold from The Good Wife? Know his accent is as fictional as Peter and Alicia’s happy marriage? Alan Cumming, who plays the political campaign manager, is from Scotland, not Chicago. Aberfeldy, to be specific.


Andrew Lincoln


Love The Walking Dead? And Andrew Lincoln’s soft Southern drawl? Well, sorry to burst your bloody bubble, but Lincoln is actually a born and bred Londoner with a British accent to boot.