Actress Thuso Mbedu

Thuso Mbedu plays the lead role of Cora Randall in Barry Jenkins’ ‘The Underground Railroad’. Image via Instagram @thuso.mebedu

Thuso Mbedu: American accent on ‘Ellen Show’ is ‘just the beginning’

South African-born actress Thuso Mbedu has replied to comments about her ‘American accent’ on ‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show’.

Actress Thuso Mbedu

Thuso Mbedu plays the lead role of Cora Randall in Barry Jenkins’ ‘The Underground Railroad’. Image via Instagram @thuso.mebedu

Emmy award-nominated actress Thuso Mbedu was first accused of trying to sound too American by during her interview with Oprah Winfrey on Oprah Daily, and now recently also called her out for her “American accent” on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

At the time of her appearance on the The Ellen DeGeneres Show, an excited Mbedu told her followers on social media that appearing on Ellen’s show was a dream come true. She also shared the pair of Ellen high-top Nikes that the award-winning host gifted her with.


While fans and friends were excited for the actress to feature on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, some of her followers began shaming her for her “sudden” American accent.

The Underground Railroad star, who is currently living in California, has now replied to her “haters” on Instagram, saying she was only practising on Ellen’s show and that there’s more to come…

“I see a lot of you commenting about my accent, I’m not gonna get into it now but I just wanna say I have not started, that was just the beginning. What you hearing now are just some of the habits that I have picked up because of the type of people I hang out with.”

Watch an excerpt of Thuso Mbedu on ‘The Ellen Degeneres Show’

ALSO READ: Vogue shoot: SA actress Thuso Mbedu going places in Giorgio Armani


nomzamo Mbatha
Actress and human rights activist Nomzamo Mbatha. Image via Instagram @nomzamo_m

Mbedu is the second Mzansi actress to be judged for her American accent this year.  Former Isibaya actress Nomzamo Mbatha also got slammed for her accent in Coming 2 America.

While many celebrated Mbatha’s debut in the movie, others judged her accent in the film.

Prolific South African playwright Zakes Mda reckons the actress changed her accent to fit in. Mda said in a TshisaLIVE article:

“Oh I agree completely about the accent! For some reason the actress had to change her SA accent which is African into something else…”  

‘African accents of African American actors’

Mda further stated that the accent Mbatha portrays in the movie is something that she and her director imagines to be an “African accent” in keeping with the “African accents” of the African American actors.

Veteran Hollywood actor Eddie Murphy however praised Mbatha, saying she made him realise just how horrible his “African accent” was.

“She’s a wonderful actress. Beautiful. We had a great time working together. She made me realise how sh***y my African accent is…”

ALSO READ: Nomzamo Mbatha on ‘Coming 2 America’ and adjusting to life in the US