Any good performance is made up of myriad subtle nuances that go into turning an actor into his or her character. There's only so much costuming and makeup can do though -- certain roles just require a particular accent to make it work. Some actors are known for their uncanny ability to pick up and drop accents at will. If you are Meryl Streep, for instance, sometimes you go and learn a whole new language just to make sure you get it right. Occasionally actors take the plunge and decide to do an accent to just show off their acting chops, or to prove that they are serious artists and not just, "movie stars." Others take on a role that requires an accent, and then just seem to hope we'll overlook how badly they mangle it. The unfortunate actors on this list may have aimed high (or not), but they all missed the mark. And in some cases, they almost managed to take out the entire film solely with their bad accents.

1. Kevin Costner - Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves

No list of bad accents would be complete without the granddaddy of all bad performances; Kevin Costner as Robin of Locksley. This 1991 stinker cast the corn-fed Costner as a British Lord with a penchant for thievery and social justice. But in spite of Costner's revolving door of accents, the film still went down as one of the biggest box-office hits of 1991, second only to Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Costner has also conceded that he never really had the time to work on a real accent (You don't say? We'd never have guessed ...). With a budget of $48,000,000, you would have thought they could have spared a few bucks for a dialect coach. But perhaps worst of all is that this film is responsible for unleashing Bryan Adam's unholy power ballad "Everything I Do" on the world and ruining wedding receptions forevermore.

2. Val Kilmer - Alexander

Now I know what you are going to say, how could I overlook Angelina Jolie and her laughable 'Gypsy-Russian' hybrid? But Kilmer as the one-eyed King Phillip gives Jolie a run for her money in the laughable accent department with his Leprechaun-inspired Irish/Welsh brogue. Director Oliver Stone has plenty to answer for when it comes to his epic drama. The wig selection alone deserves some serious mea culpas. But, this is a list about accents after all, so we go straight to Stone's decision to hide Colin Farrell's natural Irish accent by surrounding him with what sounds like a chorus of Lucky Charms spokespeople. Jolie might have been over the top, and writhing with snakes, but Kilmer still stands out as a bad accent and a horrible stylistic choice all rolled into one.
categories Cinematical