Before They Were American -- They Were Australian
The announcement this week that Oprah would be taking her studio audience on a trip to Australia reminded me of the influence that country has on entertainment in the U.S. From the early years of American movies and even today, some of the biggest box office stars have been from the Land Down Under. Errol Flynn, Russell Crowe, Cate Blanchett, Hugh Jackman, Heath Ledger, Nicole Kidman are just a few of the names that come to mind. Also Rod Taylor, Naomi Watts, Eric Bana, Peter Finch.
Then I started thinking about some U.S. television series that feature Aussie actors in all-American roles. Some of them might surprise you. These talented stars have mastered the nuances of American accents so well, I was amazed to learn that they weren’t born and raised in this country.
Simon Baker -- The Mentalist
Rose Byrne – Damages
Toni Collette – United States of Tara
Emilie de Ravin – Roswell and Lost
Portia de Rossi – Arrested Development
Rachel Griffiths -- Six Feet Under and Brothers and Sisters
Julian McMahon -- Nip/Tuck
Alex O’Loughlin – Moonlight and the new Hawaii Five-O
Next time, I’ll get into more of the influence of Australia and some of my favorite movies about the country, its history and culture, and its people. In the meantime, check out some of these actors and their series. And see if you can think of any others.
Update: As I was cataloging the season 2 of Fringe, something told me to check out the birthplace and credits of the star Anna Torv. And I was pleasantly surprised to find that she, too, is from Australia!