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Thread: help- portraying a teenage russian girl with SLIGHT accent

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    help- portraying a teenage russian girl with SLIGHT accent

    I am 16 and I live in the south of the USA i.e. tennessee. I have to play the part of a Russian decent girl with a slight accent not too heavy but still signifigant. I would like to know if there are movies that you know of that have actresses/actors that play a good russian accent or if there is any way that you can help please let me know
    kellie

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    Movie - character:

    15 minutes - Oleg Razgul
    Little Odessa - Natasha

    These are authentic.

    Also, Robin Williams makes a fairly good impersonation of a Russian doctor in Nine Months.

    That's about all I can recall

    Oh yeah, last but not least
    Red Heat - Capt. Ivan Danko (it's a joke, in case you're wondering, lately I have to explain every joke I make)
    I've got a TV, and I'm not afraid to use it

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    What about "The Terminal" with Tom Hanks?
    Какая разница, умереть богатым или бедным?

    Какой толк от богатства если ты не счастлив.

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    He doesnt speak russian, he speaks a mixture of a bunch of languages. But there is a russian guy in there, who is probly russian and doesnt have an accent.

    Robin williams also plays a russian guy in "Moscow on the hudson" but that movie is gay so whatever.
    Вот это да, я так люблю себя. И сегодня я люблю себя, ещё больше чем вчера, а завтра я буду любить себя to ещё больше чем сегодня. Тем что происходит,я вполне доволен!

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    Sigourney Weaver made a good Russian accent in Heartbreakers (hilarious episodes too). Although we knew her character knew only Da, Net, Moscow (=Moskva), Vodka and a few more words, her accent sounded Russian, alright.

    Palatalisation and rolling R's are the main features that reveal Russians but that's far from everything - sibilants, melody of sentences, the Russian X. Russians initially have problem pronouncing TH sounds (this/theory) - zis and seory , "a" in bad (they say sort of "bed") and W is like V, water - vater.
    Anatoli - Анатолий - أناتولي - 阿纳托利 - アナトーリー - 아나톨리

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    JJ
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    Quote Originally Posted by Анатолий
    Russians initially have problem pronouncing TH sounds (this/theory) - zis and seory
    vis and feory
    Gib immer 100% bei der Arbeit: 12% am Montag, 23% am Dienstag, 40% am Mittwoch, 20% am Donnerstag, 5% am Freitag ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Анатолий
    "a" in bad (they say sort of "bed").
    My name is Matt. My friends call me "Mett".
    Вот это да, я так люблю себя. И сегодня я люблю себя, ещё больше чем вчера, а завтра я буду любить себя to ещё больше чем сегодня. Тем что происходит,я вполне доволен!

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    Quote Originally Posted by JJ
    Quote Originally Posted by Анатолий
    Russians initially have problem pronouncing TH sounds (this/theory) - zis and seory
    vis and feory
    this has always surprised me, I know 2 unrelated ppl who used to do this, but I see nothing similar between those sounds at all...
    I used to do dis/teory, personally

    But if it's a _slight_ accent it should not be too prominent, this thing is one of the first to go for most ppl, imho. Matt/met is more consistent, as is v/w. Also there is an issue of a different stress pattern (heavy stress on one, and only one, syllable per word) -- but this must be hard to imitate. Also, Russian accent makes no distinction between 'oo' in good/food; if the girl supposedly came straight from Russia she could even pronounce words like 'Bob' with an 'o' like in 'dog', etc.
    Actually, there are manuals for theatre actors on how to imitate accents, you may want to check your local library.

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    JJ
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    Quote Originally Posted by laxxy
    this has always surprised me, I know 2 unrelated ppl who used to do this, but I see nothing similar between those sounds at all...
    How they tought us in a school: place your tounge between your teeth and blow the air through your mouth, it is a th, then add voice - it is a th. The blowing out air sounds like ffffffffffffff....
    Gib immer 100% bei der Arbeit: 12% am Montag, 23% am Dienstag, 40% am Mittwoch, 20% am Donnerstag, 5% am Freitag ...

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    My wife is from Bulgaria and she also has trouble with the "TH"s. She says "dis" and "teory".
    Платинов

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    I can't understand what difficulties with these sounds are. The explanation of how to pronounce is not hard to get. And practising doesn't take much time to acquire the proper sound.
    «И всё, что сейчас происходит внутре — тоже является частью вселенной».

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    I would have to agree. I have had some trouble initially pronouncing certain words. However, whether from the CD's or from a native speaker, you can hear it the "right" way. With practice you can learn anything.
    Платинов

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rtyom
    I can't understand what difficulties with these sounds are. The explanation of how to pronounce is not hard to get. And practising doesn't take much time to acquire the proper sound.
    Well, the thing is, most people can't get things 100% right from an explanation. And even when they hear the sound, they hear it differently from native speakers, because the sound recognition in the brain is affected by the native language (e.g. many Japanese ppl can not distinguish 'r' from 'l' in English, and there are issues like this for pretty much every sound). So they may _think_ they have it right, but still sound very different from native speakers.
    There are a lot of Russians who have lived in the US for 10-15+ years and still have rather thick accents, including th's, a/e's, etc etc...

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    another typical phonetic difference is that in English we can have voiced and voiceless sounds on the end of a word. For example,

    coat and code. One ends in /t/ the other in /d/.

    Russian doesnot have this. Even though words would be spelled with a d or t, the d at the end of a word is pronounced /t/.

    кот cat
    код code
    both pronounced identically when followed by silence (i.e., not another word).

    Russians speaking English will do this to English words. The letters involved are b v d z pronounced p f t s. Maybe more, I forget.

    For ex., English bad will sound like bet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwatts59
    What about "The Terminal" with Tom Hanks?
    His "accent" was some sort of a generic slavic accent, like Dogboy said it was not a real language he was speaking. His acting and behavior I found very logical and well thought out, but the accent was clearly fake.
    I've got a TV, and I'm not afraid to use it

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    Quote Originally Posted by chaika
    кот cat
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    both pronounced identically when followed by silence (i.e., not another word).
    Not quite the truth. I think only nominative case rearranges the voiced sound.
    «И всё, что сейчас происходит внутре — тоже является частью вселенной».

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    Quote Originally Posted by chaika
    another typical phonetic difference is that in English we can have voiced and voiceless sounds on the end of a word. For example,

    coat and code. One ends in /t/ the other in /d/.

    Russian doesnot have this. Even though words would be spelled with a d or t, the d at the end of a word is pronounced /t/.

    кот cat
    код code
    both pronounced identically when followed by silence (i.e., not another word).

    Russians speaking English will do this to English words. The letters involved are b v d z pronounced p f t s. Maybe more, I forget.

    For ex., English bad will sound like bet.
    Good point. It's probably one of the hardest things to get rid of, it's just way too natural. I am still doing it sometimes, especially when the following word begins with an unvoiced consonant.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwatts59
    What about "The Terminal" with Tom Hanks?
    That's a good movie, I am watching it right now... I think he does a very good job with the accent (although I know that native speakers would disagree, as they have a better idea of what a real accent sounds like.)
    I wonder if his wife helped him, she's half Bulgarian. (her dad is 100% Bulgarian, and her mom is 100% Greek) Her name is Rita Wilson now, but she was born Margarita Ibrahimoff. Her real last name sounds odd to me, more like a male's last name...
    -Fantom
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