Ewan McGregor imitated Ray Liotta's accent for American Pastoral
Ewan McGregor realised American Pastoral was is story to tell before production began.
Ewan McGregor listened to tapes of Ray Liotta speaking before each take of American Pastoral.
The Scottish actor is making his directorial debut with the upcoming crime drama, based on the 1997 novel of the same name by Philip Roth.
Ewan also stars in the film as Seymour "Swede" Levov, a former high school star athlete and a successful businessman from Newark, New Jersey.
Speaking about the movie during an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Monday night (17Oct16), the star revealed that he spent a lot of time listening to Goodfellas actor Ray talk in order to perfect the specific accent of his character.
“I just have a great dialect coach and I have a particular actor that I listened to before the takes,” Ewan said. “I listened to a bit of Ray Liotta before each take. He’s just got the right accent, he’s from there. He was the right age for me.”
While talk show host Jimmy told Ewan that he couldn’t imagine the actor in New Jersey, he responded by saying that's what being an actor is all about. He added that he spent a lot of time studying Roth’s novel and researching the history of the state.
“It’s part of our job as creative people to learn about something if we don’t know about it.
“I’ve been lots of places where I haven’t been, in movies – outer space, down a toilet,” he laughed, referring to his roles in Star Wars and Trainspotting.
Ewan, 45, also said that he loved the process of helming the film, and didn’t find it difficult to switch between directing and acting, though he admits that the movie was in the pipeline for a long time and he wasn’t sure it would ever get made.
“The film sort of started and stopped a few times, and it felt to me like it wasn’t going to happen.
“As I felt this film maybe slipping away, I realised that this was my story. And I was the right guy to tell it. I loved working with the actors, I loved working with the crew,” he shared.
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