Brits: How is Gillian Anderson's British accent?

I always think of her as American as apple pie, in The X-Files and other stuff, but I understand she’s done a lot of British film and TV work since. Listen at 2:53:51 here, for instance:

What say you?

I think she is British, isn’t she? :dubious:

She’s from Chicago.

According to her Wikipedia entry, she was born in Chicago, then briefly lived in Puerto Rico, before her family moved to London. She lived there until age 11, at which point her family moved back to the U.S.

Miss Anderson lived 10 years in London until she was 11, and the first decade determining one’s life means she’s practically English anyway.

The youtube isn’t available in my country, and downloading a 5 hour webm through a proxy would take some time, so I’ll get back later on my views of this instance.

She sounds British but then she lived here for most of her younger years and I’m sure that sort of exposure tends to stick.

Well, it downloaded via [](file:///tmp/The Fall (BBC) complete season one.webm) — as distinct from streaming — 847 mb, which is large for a youtube; and I would say her accent is perfectly normal, middle-class London or Home Counties without regionalisms.

The downbeat tone seems pitched to this sort of British Modern police procedural — which looks rather a downer.

Here’s another clip of her speaking on British television. And here she is on American television. To my American ears, her American accent sounds normal. I’ll let British posters rule on her British accent.

I’m not British, but she sounds rather mid-Atlantic in her British interview. She’ll sound Brit for a few words and then sound more US, back and forth as she talks. Considering her background which I learned in this thread, that makes sense. She probably isn’t even aware she is sounding semi-British when she’s over there.

I also saw her in some British production (Dickens, I think; movie or TV, I don’t remember which) and she sounded consistently British in that. I imagine that she can easily do that when she is acting and focused on it. But she’s not doing that in the interview.

In the Parkinson interview, there’s bits of America slipping through a fairly normal Home-Counties-type pretty posh British accent. Given her upbringing, and also that she seems to spend a lot of time in London as an adult, and has done a lot of acting over here, that may well be her default accent nowadays.

It was probably the miniseries Bleak House. She played Lady Dedlock.

From the Wikipedia page linked in post #4.

“Like some other actors (notably Linda Thorson and John Barrowman) Anderson is bidialectal. With her English accent and background, Anderson was mocked and felt out of place in the American Midwest and soon adopted a Midwest accent. To this day, her accent depends on her location — for instance, in an interview with Jay Leno she spoke in an American accent, but shifted it for an interview with Michael Parkinson.”
An interesting piece of PR this. She has the same habit that was routiney ridiculed until recently, that of drifting in and out of accents depending on who she last spoke to. Now, add a bullying angle and it’s turned into rather a sweet trait.

In hr defense I’ll say that since I left Texas almost 20 years ago my accent (which wasn’t very strong) has become a lot more uninflected…but after a few days back in Texas, it does start to come back. Unlike Madge, it may be happening unconsciously.

Interesting. My mother was born and grew up in Great Britain until she was around 13, then my grandparents moved the family here, to the suburban Detroit area. She had a more positive experience with her accent-- the other kids found her accent interesting and “exotic”. Nevertheless, she adopted a midwestern accent at some point, I think unintentionally. She just lost her English accent. I think I asked her once to say something in an English accent and she said she couldn’t any more. Even though my grandparents never lost their accents.

Gary Oldman has said that he’s lived in America so long he had to re-learn his British accent.

We’re friends with a British couple whose kids have lived in the Midwestern U.S. all their lives - now ages 10 and 8, I think. Both kids still have strong (and adorable) British accents just from exposure to their parents.

On the other hand, I have family friends who all have different accents; the husband, his native New Zealand accent; the wife, Australian. Their daughter was born in England, and her accent is, of course, English. Ya pretty much get your accent from the kids you grow up with.

Josh Thomas, who some may know from his show Please Like Me, has a very weird accent. He was born and grew up in Queensland, Australia, but his accent is almost British, which some have ascribed to the influence of his Irish parents. Most kids don’t have a strong influence from their parents accents, and tend to get it from the kids and culture they grow up in, but he’s an interesting exception.

Ryan Kwanten, who played Jason Stackhouse in the HBO series True Blood is from Australia. His southern accent as this character sounds exactly like my 42 year old nephew who was born and raised in Memphis, TN