The best and worst Scottish accents ever performed by famous actors


Scottish accents have appeared in many great films and TV shows over the years, but the attempts to copy our famous lilt by non-Scottish actors can often leave a lot to be desired.

With the Scottish accent recently being voted sexiest in the UK (shouldn’t that be the world?), it’s no surprise it’s so popular – but who has been successful at imitating and who has failed miserably?

We’ve taken a look at some of the best and worst attempts at a Scottish accent by famous actors over the years and put together a list of the good, the bad, and the downright ugly.

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The Worst Scottish accents by famous actors

Mel Gibson in Braveheart

Mel Gibson in Braveheart
Mel Gibson in Braveheart

Probably the most famous example of a bad Scottish accent comes in one of the most famous movies ever filmed in the country.

Director Mel Gibson cast himself as William Wallace in the title role but failed to nail the accent, passable but it gets Scottish people’s backs up more due to random people around the world shouting “Freeddoommm” at us at any given moment.

Christopher Lambert in Highlander

Though the film itself is a slice of 80s cult classic goodness, the accents in it are pretty hilarious.

First, Frenchman Christopher Lambert mangling his own attempts then an actual Scot in Sean Connery barely attempting to mask his own actual Scottish accent as he plays an ancient Egyptian/Spanish warrior.

Lambert attempting to say “Och ya haggis” will live long in the memory.

Chris Hemsworth in ‘The Huntsman: Winter’s War’

Hilariously, Chris himself revealed that his “Celtic influenced” fantasy Scottish accent was described by one reviewer as the “worst Glaswegian accent” since Fat B*****d in Austin Powers.

Speaking of which…

Mike Myers in So I Married an Ax Murderer

Though people might know his Shrek and Scottish Austin Power’s characters better, Mike Myers actually made his first attempt at a Scottish accent in his hit film So I Married an Ax Murderer, with his Scottish dad character.

And it’s pretty shocking – though typically hilarious.

Claire Forlani in the Dewar’s Whiskey ads

This ad should be a winning formula – starring a great actress it has a decent soundtrack and excellent lighting.

Except most people probably weren’t counting on Claire’s attempt at a Scottish accent, which is made all the more comical when you consider that Claire grew up in London meaning she has probably met, and spoken to, more than a few Scottish people in her life.

And this is before you learn that she not only played Sean Connery’s daughter in the Rock, but that she is also married to a famous Scottish actor in Dougray Scott.

The best Scottish accents by famous actors

Jonny Lee Miller in Trainspotting

Let’s face it, most of the people watching the film thought Jonny was Scottish and more importantly actually from Edinburgh, his accent was that good.

Lotte Verbeek in Outlander

Most Outlander fans would have struggled to guess that Lotte wasn’t Scottish, never mind the fact she’s actually Dutch so good is her attempt at the Scottish accent. Ok, so the Outlander star doesn’t get everything perfect but it’s pretty impressive nonetheless.

Emma Thompson in Brave

Playing the Scottish mother opposite Billy Connelly and Kelly MacDonald is definitely a test to anyone Scottish accent skills but Emma Thompson hits it with aplomb and blends right in with the rest of the Scots cast.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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