What's with the American accents for British TV shows?

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by John_Berger, Aug 3, 2003.

  1. John_Berger

    John_Berger Cinematographer

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    My daughter loves "The Tweenines". So, I decided to check the official site. Turns out that the official site is the BBC and the show was originally produced for the Beeb, yet all of the characters (as played on Noggin) have American accents.

    Even Bob the Builder, owned by HiT Entertainment (a British company), appears to have a separate American version. Just go to the official Bob the Builder web site and you'll hear the theme song sung with a British accent. The theme song in the US and the voices of all of the characters are in an American accent.

    What is up with this? Are these shows being specially voice acted for the U.S./Canada? I have a hard time believing that the American consumer is so arrogant that companies like HiT feel the need to "Americanize" their shows for an American audience.

    This is not unique to TV. The Scottish group The Proclaimers were told that they should release their music with American accents and they refused. Personally, I'm glad at their thick brogue adds a wonderful dimension to their music. Why were they told to drop their accent? I don't get this.

    Does anyone have any information on this ridiculous phenomenon?
     
  2. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    The most ridiculous was Stressed Eric, where the main character was made American, but everyone else remained English.

    It's probably like widescreen - parents are going to care about it more than kids.
     
  3. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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  4. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    Heck, Sweet Sixteen was actually shown subtitled here. Which annoyed the heck out of me, because I really felt like the subtitles were preventing me from acclimating to the accents.
     
  5. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    And just look at what bombs the "Harry Potter" films have been. If only they'd had American actors, perhaps they would have found an audience. [​IMG]
     
  6. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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  7. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    wasnt robbie the reindeer injured this way too, with the recent showing on us tv?
     
  8. John_Berger

    John_Berger Cinematographer

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    Outrageous. Look at how well most British TV shows do in the U.S. For a long time there has been a huge following around so many UK shows, not the least of which include classics like Monty Python, Are You Being Served?, and so forth. Hell, Wallace and Gromit are Academy Award winners and they weren't dubbed!

    What's even dumber is that the shows are geared towards KIDS -- you know, the type of human that is the least prone to being judgemental about things like accents?

    Well, if the Brits are going to be so ridiculous about THEIR accents, then I expect all Canadian shows from this point on to pronouce the "ou" in words like Americans do, damn it! [​IMG]

    ** sigh ** What can I say? This topic is just one of my pet peeves. While making a show for kids, they treat the adults like children by thinking that we'll really give a shit about what accent is used. How absurd.
     

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