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Fake Irish

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The cousin to Fake Brit and Fake American (and adequately, Fake Scot) and a subtrope of Fake Nationality.

Irish characters are some of the most frequently depicted foreigners in British and American media but they often tend to be played by non-Irish actors with, ahem, "variable" success when it comes to accents, or use the "wrong" Irish accent. For instance Northern Irish accents are quite distinct from southern Irish accents. Ireland is quite unique as a country in that there can be startling differences in accents within counties; a north Dublin accent for instance is like night and day to a southern one from only an hour's drive away.

Another reason why non-Irish actors are used is the desire for name recognition. Even if an appropriate-age largely unknown Irish actor is available the film makers will often be tempted to go for someone with more international appeal. For some reason this seems to be particularly the case with female actors; even a film with mostly Irish actors, like Intermission or About Adam or the recent Perrier's Bounty will still fill its female roles with British or American actors. This may be why there are quite a few famous Irish male actors in Hollywood but vanishingly few famous Irish female actors: their chances of a breakthrough role are that much smaller (with the notable exception of Saoirse Ronan). See also this article for theories on why there are so few name female Irish actors. This can also overlap with Britain Is Only London - as a lot of casting tends to be based there, especially if it's a UK-backed production - and there's an inherent bias to favoring London actors, while almost shutting out Irish actors completely (as noted on the Fake Brit page, most Irish actors who get fame will likely play more Brits or Americans in the long run). In recent years, this has started drawing comparisons to whitewashing.

For some reason Scottish actors seem to be disproportionately likely to play Irish characters, which is unlikely to help those who already can't tell the two countries apart. Also, a strong Ulster or Southern Irish accent done by a Scottish person would confuse things even further (such as the Glaswegian actor of Irish descent, David O'Hara in The Departed or Dundonian Brian Cox in 25th Hour).

As you might expect, Fake Irish characters often slip into Oireland territory. American, British, Canadian, or Australian actors of Irish descent may be able to avoid the label if they properly learn the accent from any Irish relatives they may have. But if they screw up the accent, expect to hear about it.


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  • This Irish Spring commercial has a girl that in spite of being very redheaded and with the Irish name Deirdre, is very American.
  • Canadian actor Christopher Plummer dons a very stereotypical Irish accent for Killian's Irish Red, a fake Irish beer from Coors. [1]

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Daniel Day-Lewis is English born, but his father was Irish and he himself now has Irish citizenship. But he still fakes the accent in several films - very convincingly too. Ironically in Gangs of New York, he plays a xenophobe who hates the Irish.
  • In The Fighting Prince of Donegal, none of the main leads in Irish roles originated from Ireland, including its English leading man Peter McEnery.
  • Gone with the Wind has New Jersey native Thomas Mitchell as Irish immigrant Gerard O'Hara. He himself was the son of Irish immigrants.
  • Julia Roberts played real-life Irishwoman Kitty Kiernan in Michael Collins and fictional Irishwoman Mary Reilly (in the film of that name) in the same year.
  • The Quiet Man mostly averts this, as it was filmed in Ireland and featured a majority of Irish actors (including Maureen O'Hara). But Ward Bond (American) and Victor McLalgen (English) as Father Peter and Red Will respectively. Mildred Natwick (American) was also quite convincing as the Widow Tillane. John Wayne also plays an Irish-born American - though of course his character's accent has faded from years in America.
    • McLaglen played quite a few of these, and being a close friend of famously Irish-American director John Ford, was often mistakenly thought to be actually Irish in Real Life.
  • Scottish actors Kelly Macdonald and Shirley Henderson played Irish sisters in Intermission.
  • The 1995 film Circle Of Friends was particularly full of fake Irish: Minnie Driver, Saffron Burrows, Colin Firth (English), and Alan Cumming (Scottish). Chris O'Donnell is of Irish descent but has a pretty bad attempt at an accent.
  • Ryan's Daughter had English, Australian and American leads surrounded by Irish extras. In fact this particular film might push the trope into Unfortunate Implications territory: the sympathetic 'Irish' characters are all played by foreign actors while the less sympathetic/outright villainous villagers are portrayed by natives.
  • Yorkshireman Sean Bean played an IRA man in Patriot Games. In fact only three actors in this film were actually Irish: Richard Harris, Patrick Bergin and Jonathan Ryan (Who was NOT playing John 'Jack' Patrick Ryan). This means all of the other Irish characters were this trope. Englishwoman Polly Walker plays the IRA terrorist Annette, though it is revealed in film that Annette is British-born (presumably of Irish ancestry). There have been substantial ethnic Irish communities in England and Scotland for centuries, with many, of course, being involved with Irish nationalist activities in one way or another.
  • Sean Bean played another Fake Irish in the adaptation of Irish playwright John B. Keane's drama The Field, again alongside Richard Harris, as did John Hurt.
  • Richard Gere played a (former) IRA man in the The Jackal with a notably horrible accent.
  • Tommy Lee Jones played a (former) IRA bomber in Blown Away (notice a pattern here?), also with a bad accent (though the film is notable for having some characters speak in Irish, unusual for American cinema). In the same film Jeff Bridges played a Boston cop who was — you guessed — formerly in the IRA (and had no trace of Irish accent, but he was pretending to be an American-born Boston native, which is famous for having many people with Irish background).
  • The Scottish Ian Bannen played Jackie O'Shea in Waking Ned Devine.
  • Emily Watson (English) and Robert Carlyle (Scottish) play Frank McCourt's parents in Angela's Ashes.
  • British-born and Canadian-raised Kim Cattrall played Brendan Gleeson's Irish wife in The Tiger's Tail.
  • Debatable examples: Leonardo DiCaprio and Cameron Diaz played Irish/first generation Irish-American characters in Gangs of New York. You could make a case for it being this trope in that whilst both their characters are American born like themselves, neither actor is of Irish descent. As for their accents, Leo's isn't all that imposing but you can let it slide as he's been in America most his life. Diaz's is unfortunately noticeable for all the wrong reasons.
  • Michael J. Fox and Lea Thompson in Back to the Future Part III play Seamus and Mary McFly, part of the Identical Grandson / And You Were There of the series.
  • In a mix between Fake Irish, Fake Nationality and Fake American, British actor Alan Rickman played real life half-Cuban, New York-born, Irish revolutionary Eamon de Valera in Michael Collins.
  • Scot Ewan McGregor portrayed James Joyce in Nora.
  • Scot Gerard Butler portrayed Hilary Swank's late Irish husband in P.S. I Love You. His Fake Irish accent was generally savaged by Irish newspaper reviews. She then goes on a holiday to Ireland and meets Jeffrey Dean Morgan. Amusingly Butler was quite open about his failure to "channel" his Irish ancestry and during an interview actually issued a lighthearted (but no less honest) apology to the people of Ireland.
  • Ronin (1998): Natascha McElhone is English in real life. However, her mother is Irish, and Natasha regularly visited Donegal as a child. Her accent leaves something to be desired, though.
  • In Jackie, the Israeli-American Natalie Portman plays First Lady Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy, who was historically half-Irish and a practicing Catholic like her husband.
  • Both parents in In America are played by English actors (Paddy Considine and Samantha Morton), though the daughters are played by real-life Irish sisters (Emma and Sarah Bolger).
  • Far and Away gave us an 'Irish' accented Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman. This film in particular is a sore spot for many Irish people, given how legendarily bad the former's accent is. Some of it was actually filmed there, ironically enough.
  • Alan Hale, Sr., father of "The Skipper" and friend of Errol Flynn (see under Real Life below) played a ton of Irish characters in the '30s and '40s such as the Earl of Tyrone (The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex), Gallagher (Three Cheers for the Irish), Francis Patrick Murphy (Captains of the Clouds), Pat Corbett (Gentleman Jim), "Boats" O'Hara (Action in the North Atlantic), "Big Mike" Harrigan (God is My Co-Pilot), etc.
  • Canadian Victor Garber played real life Belfastman Thomas Andrews in Titanic (1997), but was criticised in Northern Ireland for apparently using a soft southern lilt, rather than the much harsher Ulster accent.
  • Ordinary Decent Criminal, a movie very loosely based on real-life Dublin gangster Martin Cahill, starred Kevin Spacey as the Cahill-type character, fellow American Linda Fiorentino as his wife and Brit actor Helen Baxendale as Fiorentino's sister.
  • Irish princess Isolde was played by English actor Sophia Myles in the 2006 version of Tristan and Isolde.
  • Disney's Darby O'Gill and the Little People had Sean Connery (Scottish), Janet Munro (English) and Estelle Winwood (English) playing Irish characters.
  • Sean Connery in Tarzans Greatest Adventure, Darby O'Gill and the Little People, The Molly Maguires and The Untouchables (1987). For the last one, he was once elected "worst accent ever" given Sean never attempts anything but Scottish.
  • The Amy Adams film Leap Year has her Irish love interest played by Devon-born Matthew Goode.
  • Michael Caine played a Dublin actor in the 2003 film The Actors. He didn't even try to do an Irish accent.
  • 2010 gangster flick Perrier's Bounty has Jim Broadbent as Cillian Murphy's father. In the same film Jodie Whittaker is an odd semi-example: she keeps her native accent so (presumably) her character is English, but since her nationality is never addressed and since nothing about the character is specifically English it seems likely the role was originally written as Irish but Whittaker couldn't manage an Irish accent.
  • Brad Pitt has played Irish characters in two films, as well as some Irish-American characters. He is a Northern Irish terrorist in The Devil's Own, and an Irish Traveller in Snatch.. He does quite well on the accent test: most people think his accent in Snatch is pretty good, and while opinion is more divided about his Belfast accent in The Devil's Own, a lot of people think he definitely avoids Oireland level even if he fell short.
  • The Belfast-based movie Cherrybomb (2009) falls prey to this. Although pretty much all the supporting cast members were genuinely Irish, the male lead (Rupert Grint) was English and his love interest (Kimberly Nixon) was Welsh, and yet they were required to put on strong Irish accents for their roles.
  • In a bizarre bit of casting Alice Eve, perhaps the most thoroughly English young actor working today played an Irish nanny (named 'Erin', which is a little like having a British nanny named 'Albion') in the second Sex and the City movie. At least one critic thought her character verged into outright racism.
  • Australian actress Cate Blanchett played the eponymous lead in Veronica Guerin, a biopic about an investigative journalist who was assassinated for investigating The Irish Mob and its involvement in the drug trade in Ireland.
  • Another Veronica Guerin biopic, When The Sky Falls had American actor Joan Allen play the same role.
  • The B movie Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus has one character whose accent is supposed to be either Scottish or Irish, and is positively painful to listen to, it fails so badly.
  • In a weird semi-example Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows saw Rhys Ifans (who is proudly Welsh) play Xenophilius Lovegood with a noticeable Irish accent to fit in better with his on-screen daughter Luna Lovegood (who is played by Irish actress Evanna Lynch).
  • Disney's The Luck of the Irish is full of these. Henry Gibson, Marita Geraghty, and Timothy Omundson, just to name three. All Americans (although Omundson is part-Irish).
  • In The Boondock Saints, American Norman Reedus plays one of two Irish twin brothers. Irish-American Sean Patrick Flanery plays the other. In the second movie they seem to be doing the accent intentionally badly.
  • American Aidan Quinn and Danish Connie Nielsen in A Shine of Rainbows. Although as the name might hint, Quinn is of Irish descent.
  • In the Name of the Father had English actors Daniel Day-Lewis, Mark Sheppard and Pete Postlethwaite play Irish characters. However Day-Lewis has some Irish ancestry, possesses Irish citizenship and lives there, while Sheppard also has some Irish heritage - though it should be noted they play Northern Irish characters. All of them put on good accents too. It's averted with most Irish characters played by wholly Irish actors anyway.
  • John Ford's The Informer has an Englishman — Victor McLaglen — in the lead. The IRA leader is played by Preston Foster, from New Jersey. To his credit, Ford doesn't even have him try to fake an Irish accent...which makes it easier for the audience to suspend disbelief and just enjoy some great performances.
  • Mick Jagger's laughable attempt to imitate an Irish accent in Ned Kelly.
  • Stonehearst Asylum: The English actor David Thewlis plays an Irishman, Mickey Finn.
  • British actor Heather Sears pulled out a very creditable Irish accent for her few lines in The Story of Esther Costello.
  • The film Rory O'Shea Was Here (European title Inside I'm Dancing) features James McAvoy, Romola Garai and Stephen Robertson all playing Irish characters, though Robertson is a marginal case as his character has cerebral palsy. Garai in particular nails the upper class Dublin (or 'D4' as it's nicknamed) dialect.
  • Brooklyn has Julie Walters playing the Irish landlady Mrs Keogh. Walters has Irish ancestry but speaks in a Liverpool accent naturally. Jim Broadbent also plays an Irish priest, though his accent seems to be a bit all over the place to imply it has simply faded from his many years in New York. Elsewhere averted with the majority of Irish characters played by Irish actors. It also marks the first major role where Saoirse Ronan and Domhnall Gleeson play Irish characters. Although Saoirse speaks with a Dublin accent naturally and adopts a more rural accent as her character Eilish is an Enniscorthy native.
  • The film adaptation of Dancing at Lughnasa features a family of five Irish sisters, and only one of them played by an Irish actor. Meryl Streep does quite a good job of adopting the Donegal accent, as do the rest of the female English actors. Only Kathy Burke's accent slips from scene to scene.
  • Kathy Burke again plays an Irish character in Pan - this one with a more stereotypical Oireland accent.
  • My Name Is Emily has a quasi-example. Arden, played by English actor George Webster, has an Irish and English parent but keeps his own accent. The character was written to be Irish and just changed to accommodate Webster.
  • The Town features British actor Pete Postlethwaite as a Boston Irish gangster Ferdie.
  • Sing Street features a mostly Irish cast; the exception is American-born British actor Lucy Boynton as Raphina.
  • Nominally Irish assassin Nina Williams from the Tekken game series is played by South African actor Candice Hillebrand in the film adaptation. Her sister Anna is played by Spanish actor Marian Zapico. The characters are heard speaking with American accents (which admittedly they do in the games too), so presumably they lost their accents at some point.
  • About Adam is a 2000 Romantic Comedy about four Irish sisters. Two of them are played by Frances O'Connor (English) and Kate Hudson (American). The accents aren't half bad either.
  • Agnes Browne is a 1999 film that features a majority Irish cast. The exceptions are Anjelica Huston - who does a very impressive job - and Ray Winstone - who does not.
  • Anjelica Huston previously played an Irish woman in The Dead (1987) - very impressively again alongside an all-Irish cast and sounding appropriately like an early 20th century Galway woman. Both examples were undoubtedly helped by the fact that she spent a good portion of her childhood in Ireland.
  • Robert Shaw famously played Irish characters in the likes of From Russia with Love and The Sting. It may come as a surprise to learn that he was actually English (he was born in Cornwall but spent a lot of his life in Ireland).
  • The Last Leprechaun: Finn the leprechaun is played by English actor Mick Walter.
  • In Leapin' Leprechauns and Spellbreaker: Secret of the Leprechauns, John Bluthal, a Polish-born actor raised in Australia and later a British citzen plays Michael Dennehy, an English actor plays the king of the leprechauns, and Tina Martin, an English actor plays the queen of the fairies.
  • Most, if not all portrayals of Jose Rizal's common-law wife Josephine Bracken were played by Filipinos, despite the real-life Bracken being of Irish descent.
  • Fifty Dead Men Walking is set in 1980s Belfast and features a few:
    • English actors Jim Sturgess and William Houston as IRA members, both very convincing. Englishwoman Natalie Press is also decent enough as the love interest Lara.
    • Kevin Zegers (Canadian) is extremely impressive as Sean.
    • Rose McGowan meanwhile speaks with an American accent naturally and does have Irish ancestry, but her accent comes and goes as Grace.
  • The 2020 film Wild Mountain Thyme features Emily Blunt and Christopher Walken faking rural Irish accents. Jamie Dornan is himself Irish, but from Northern Ireland, and thus has to fake an accent too. Due to the film's criticism of Oireland stereotyping, all the accents (except perhaps Christopher Walken's) were slammed pretty badly when the trailer dropped. The director defended this, claiming an international audience wouldn't be able to understand the accents if they were authentic.
  • The film Black 47 is set during the Irish Potato Famine - yet its three highest billed actors are Australians Hugo Weaving and James Aitken Frecheville, and British Jim Broadbent (although this character is at least an Anglo-Irish landlord). Irish actors Moe Dunford, Barry Keoghan and Sarah Greene do at least play prominent supporting roles.
  • French-English actress Emma Mackey pulls off an Irish accent rather effectively in 2020's The Winter Lake.
  • Leprechaun: In the first six movies, Lubdan is played by English actor Warwick Davis. In Leprechaun Returns, he's played by Canadian actor Linden Porco.
  • The Great White Hype has an In-Universe case. Despite having an extremely Irish name, Terry Conklin is not Irish at all. The boxing promoter who lured Conklin back into the ring in hopes of generating a big payday from racist white audiences tuning in to see a white fighter take on the black undefeated heavyweight champion, however, claims that Conklin is Irish-American so he has an easy way to hype the fight. It also lets said promoter be practically open about the racial motivations for the fight even while denying that race is a factor.
  • The 2020 film Here Are the Young Men is set in Dublin, and has the following Brits portraying Irish characters; Dean Charles Chapman, Finn Cole, Ralph Ineson and Anya Taylor-Joy. Of them all, Anya Taylor-Joy's is the most convincing.
  • The Magdalene Sisters:
    • Geraldine McEwan did have Irish grandparents on both sides, but she was English born, and thus fakes a passable attempt at an Irish accent as Sister Bridget.
    • Anne Marie Duff is in a similar boat to the above; Irish ancestry but English born, and thus putting on an accent.
    • The Scottish director Peter Mullan has a small role as Una's father, putting on a decent Dublin accent.
  • The same year as The Magdalene Sisters, Anne-Marie Duff also starred in the very similar Sinners, again playing an Irish-accented woman.
  • All About E: Australian Brett Rogers plays Irishman Matt O'Halloran.
  • Doctor at Large: O'Malley was played by John Chandos, a Scottish actor.
  • No Kidding: While Tandy is played by an Irishman (Noel Purcell), his grandson Will isn't and is instead played by the British Brian Rawlinson.
  • Boy Eats Girl: David Leon, who's English, plays the Irish lead character Nathan.

    Live-Action TV 
  • American Gods: Canadian Pablo Schreiber plays Irish leprechaun Mad Sweeney, and Australian Emily Browning plays Irishwoman Essie McGowan.
  • Boardwalk Empire:
    • Scottish actor Kelly Macdonald plays Irish immigrant Margaret Schroder with quite a convincing accent for a character from early 20th century Kerry.
    • The IRA fighter Owen Sleater is played by the English Charlie Cox.
    • The Sinn Féin politician John McGarrigle is played by the American Ted Rooney.
    • Margaret's brother, Eamonn is played by the Scottish Tony Curran.
    • Irish-American Nucky Thompson is played by Italian-American Steve Buscemi, who is of half Irish descent.
    • In-Universe case with Mickey Doyle. He's a Pole, with the real name Mieczyslaw Kuzik, posing as an Irishman.
  • Buffyverse:
    • Galway-born Angel is portrayed by Buffalo-born, Philadelphia-raised American David Boreanaz.note  This tends to come up only in flashback scenes. While Spike is still proudly English, Angel has buried his brogue due to the bad memories.
    • Most of the flashback scenes in Angel contain some dreadful examples of Oireland, including a delightful buxom wench played by American Christina Hendricks who sounds - well - not Irish. playing Samuel.
  • Burn Notice has both a regular and an in-universe example. Brit Gabrielle Anwar plays former-IRA Fiona Glennane; however, you'd be forgiven for not noticing, as she adopts another, American-ish accent in the second episode (and her original Irish accent was bad enough that it comes as a relief). American Jeffrey Donovan plays American Michael Westen, who uses a cover as Irish terrorist Michael McBride. Also, Michael's Irish accent is so good, Fiona's brother Sean tells him his American accent is "a bit dodgy". Made even funnier by the fact that Fiona's brother is played by Gideon Emery, an Englishman and fellow Fake Irish.
  • Conversations with Friends: Unlike the Normal People adaptation in which Daisy Edgar-Jones was the only non-Irish cast member (and even so, her mum is from the North), Alison Oliver is the only Irish actor out of the main four.
  • Coppers End: Paddy from "The Drunken Irishman" was played by the British Mark Eden.
  • Daredevil gives us Charlie Cox as Irish-American Matt Murdock and Elden Henson as Irish-American Foggy Nelson. With Foggy, they make this more convincing in season 3 by the casting of native Irish actor Peter Halpin as Foggy's brother Theo.
  • The Classic Doctor Who serial "The Wheel in Space" took place on a space station featuring a multinational crew, nearly all of whom were played by British actors adopting fake accents. One such crew member was the Irish Sean Flannigan, played by English actor James Mellor.
  • Father Ted - of all shows - used this at least once with native Glaswegian Clare Grogan playing Niamh Connolly, an Irish radical feminist pop singer.
  • British actor Paul Whitehouse played Irish estate worker Ted (of the Ted & Ralph sketches) in The Fast Show.
  • In General Hospital, American actor Erin Chambers plays Galway native Siobhan McKenna...with an extremely thick accent that sounds as fake as it is.
  • This trope was explicitly parodied and Lampshaded in the first episode of The Troubles themed sitcom Give My Head Peace when the IRA characters (played by genuine Northern Irish actors) are given 'dodgy English' accents.
  • In Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, the Irish demi-goddess Morrigan is played by the Canadian Tamara Gorski (and no, she doesn't have an ounce of Irish blood in her, she's of Ukrainian descent). Then again, no character in that show is played by an actor of the same nationality (e.g. the lead is a Greek with a Roman name played by an American).
  • None of the characters who appeared in the brief 'Peter in Ireland arc' in Heroes were portrayed by Irish actors (and it shows), though one was an Irish-American, and another was Dominic Keating, who is half Irish, although he was raised in England. Two seasons later we had American Robert Knepper
  • Subverted with British actor Jamie Bamber, who was born in London, but is of Irish ancestry and has Irish citizenship, thanks to his mother. However, his character from Law & Order: UK, Matt Devlin, was given a slightly different background—born in Ireland, but emigrated to London at young age.
  • Knots Landing has an in-universe example. Although it was hinted in several episodes soon after his introduction in Season Nine that Johnny Rourke wasn't really Irish, this was not confirmed until the Season Ten episode "Deserted". When Johnny, Michael, Paige and several Mexicans are trapped in a deserted truck in rapidly increasing temperatures, Michael notices that Johnny has dropped his (painfully fake) Irish accent. Johnny replies that he is too tired to make the effort. He explains that he was about to commit a robbery in Belfast when he happened across an IRA cell. He adopted an Irish accent, told them that he was a nationalist and immediately started working for them, an explanation which is almost as unconvincing as his accent. He met Paige in Dublin some time after that.
  • The Last Kingdom: Scottish actor Mark Rowley puts on an Irish accent to play the Irish character Finan.
  • Murder, She Wrote: The Celtic Riddle. Good gravy. We even get a sub-plot where there's a secret message coded in Ogham. And the "Irish" characters can't even pronounce "Ogham" properly! (it's "oh-am" in case you're wondering)
  • The 2020 adaptation of Normal People featured North London native Daisy Edgar Jones as the female lead. She does have a Northern Irish mother, but the dialect she goes for is that of Sligo, which is quite different. She was praised for her authenticity, many not even realising she was English in the first place.
  • Peaky Blinders takes place in Birmingham, but there are two Irish characters in the cast. New Zealander Sam Neill comes by his Ulster accent honestly - it's based upon his own father's County Tyrone accent - but Englishwoman Annabelle Wallis has to also affect a Northern Irish accent. It's pretty good; her costar Cillian Murphy praised the work she did.
  • Penny Dreadful: English actress Billie Piper portrays Irish immigrant Brona Croft/Lily Frankenstein.
  • Raw was made and set in Ireland, and featured other nationalities but still...
    • Joe Doyle (English) fakes an Irish accent as Richard.
    • Amy Manson (Scottish) as Zoe, though where she's from is never actually stated.
  • Roar: a pre-fame Heath Ledger played a young Irish warrior prince.
  • Jimmy O'Phelan on Sons of Anarchy; his accent's pretty painful as played by American Titus Welliver. In fact, the entire Belfast sequence was painful. Seems they couldn't combine filming on location with hiring actual Irish actors, with the exception of Paula Malcomson. Though maybe choosing not to surround terrible accents with genuine ones was a wise decision.
  • St. Elsewhere:
    • American Eric Stoltz as Eddie Carson in "Under Pressure", "Entrapment" and "All About Eve".
    • American Edward Herrmann as Father Joseph McCabe in "Time Heals, Part 1", "Time Heals, Part 2" and "Where There's Hope, There's Crosby".
    • American Fredd Wayne as Pat McGroyn in "Up and Down".
  • The three Irish characters in The Thorn Birds (Ralph, Paddy, Mary) are played by Americans and Brits. Adding insult to injury, as is par for the course with this trope, only one of them even bothers to try sounding like an Irishman, and he does it badly.
  • The Twilight Zone (1985):
    • The entire cast of "The Little People of Killany Woods".
    • American Cork Hubbert as the Leprechaun Shawn McGool in "The Leprechaun-Artist".
    • Canadian Bunty Webb as Maggie Dugan in "The Crossing".
  • In The Wild Wild West two episodes - "The Night of the Double-Edged Knife" and "The Night of the Ready-Made Corpse" - feature some actionably bad Irish accents, particularly Elisha Cook in the former and Karen Sharpe hamming it up in the latter ("Terrible! TERRIBLE!" indeed). On the other hand, "The Night of the Firebrand" has Pernell Roberts not only playing a convincing Irishman but also playing a convincing Irishman pretending to be American!

    Music Videos 
  • In Stolen City's video for "Faces", two of the small town Irish thugs are played by French-born Thomas Sharkey and British-born Bobby Calloway.

    Video Games 
  • Henry of No More Heroes fame is played by Quinton Flynn. Quite fitting, considering the voice actor of Henry's rival and twin brother Travis Touchdown pulls a Fake American accent.
  • Sean Devlin, the Irish protagonist of The Saboteur is played by the English voice actor Robin Atkin Downes, and he isn't all that convincing.
  • Interestingly, BioShock accomplishes this in-story. The very Irish revolutionary "Atlas" is actually a monstrously amoral New Jersey businessman putting on an accent, but the character is voiced by Irishman Karl Hanover, and his true identity is voiced by a different actor.
  • Cait of Fallout 4 is supposedly Irish, but is voiced by a Scottish VA.
  • Space Pirate Kaptin Bluddflagg of Dawn of War Retribution occasionally sounds Irish in addition to the standard ork and Talk Like a Pirate lingo, but is voiced by an American.
  • Shay Cormac in Assassin's Creed Rogue is voiced by a Canadian and his accent is absolutely horrible to say the least.

    Web Animation 
  • During one review in Zero Punctuation, Yahtzee did half the review in a stereotypical Irish accent, including changing the cartoon version of himself to wearing a green hat and sporting a large, red beard.

    Web Videos 

    Western Animation 
  • Of all the Irish characters in Jakers! The Adventures of Piggley Winks only the adult version of Piggley is voiced by an Irish actor (Peadar Lamb). The others are all voiced by Americans, except Molly and Dannan O'Mallard who are voiced by Canadian Tara Strong.
  • The infamous Captain Planet episode set in Belfast. Setting aside its magnificently terrible stereotyping and complete lack of research, all the voice acting clearly wasn't performed by anyone raised remotely near Belfast.
  • Philip Williams (Canadian) voices Sgt. Murphy in an Irish accent on The Busy World of Richard Scarry.
  • Care Bears (1980s): The first series, which was produced by DIC Entertainment, attempted to give Good Luck Bear an Irish accent, courtesy of the Canadian Dan Hennessey. The accent ended up sounding more like a Sean Connery impression, and afer Nelvana took over for the show, Good Luck was recast (by the also-Canadian Marla Lukofsky) and the accent was dropped.

    Real Life 
  • Patrick O'Brian (born Richard Patrick Russ), the Hibernophile English author of the Aubrey-Maturin series at the very least made no move to correct journalists who thought he was Irish though whether he actively pretended to be Irish is a bit murkier.
  • Errol Flynn, who was an Australian of partial-Irish descent, passed himself as Irish in his early Hollywood career in the belief that few people knew of Australia.
  • Micheál Mac Liammóir, "the Father of Irish Theatre", claimed to have born in Cork and educated by Catholic monks. He was actually born "Alfred Wilmore" in London to English Protestant parents with no Irish ancestry, and only moved to Ireland in his early-twenties. He even acted under his real name as a child.
  • People figured out at one point that if you want to be elected a judge in the Chicago area, you need an Irish-sounding name—nobody's ever heard of any of the candidates, so the "vote for the person who sounds Irish" contingent swamps the people who are actually voting based on policy. So many lawyers who wanted to be judges changed their names that the county started requiring their old names to appear next to their new ones on the ballot.
  • It was also a trend for boxers in the late 1800s and early 1900s to adopt Irish names, as it was believed that Irish boxers drew better crowds than the former. Examples include the Italian-born Johnny Dundee (born Guiseppe Curreri), Italian-American "Fireman" Jim Flynn (Andrew Chiariglione), Lithuanian-American former heavyweight champion Jack Sharkey (Joseph Zukauskas), and even Frank Sinatra's Sicilian father Anthony Martin Sinatra (as Marty O'Brien; he later opened a tavern called Marty O'Brien's). In a bit of an inversion, there's Michael Gomez, an Irish Traveller boxer who was born Michael Armstrong, but adopted Gomez in homage to Puerto Rican legend Wilfredo Gomez. Ironically, his nickname is the Manchester Mexican.
  • For a time during The '70s and The '80s, this was a trend in professional wrestling, likely for the same reasons. Hulk Hogan is probably the most famous example.
  • Robin Wilson from Gin Blossoms would for some reason sing with a slight Irish accent.