Julia Garner is giving Lady Gaga a run for her money when it comes to bizarre European accents, as she delivers a truly fascinating mod-podge of an accent in the first trailer for Netflix’s new series from Shonda Rhimes, Inventing Anna.
The Ozark actress plays infamous scammer Anna Delvey, who managed to convince a number of New York City socialites that she was an Instagram-famous German heiress, as she conned, lied, and schemed her way into hundreds of thousands of dollars from banks, as well as from the pockets of her so-called friends. But the Russian-born grifter’s house of cards folded when she was found guilty on grand larceny charges in 2019.
It’s a true story so wild, its villain would only naturally have an unhinged accent to match, and Garner delivers. She perhaps even knocks Lady Gaga off her throne when it comes to kooky European accents, as Gaga was forced to defend her more-Russian-than-Italian accent when playing Patrizia Reggiani in House of Gucci last year.
Garner’s accent seems to be all over the place, but she told W Magazine that it was simply part of her effort to represent Delvey’s fraudulent global citizen status.
“Anna’s posing as a German heiress, but actually she’s Russian, so first I had to learn to speak in English with a proper German accent, and after that learn a slightly Russian accent to add underneath,” Garner explained. “Then you have the element that she probably learned English from the Brits, because she’s European, but she’d also lived in America and loved to watch Gossip Girl. So, the musicality of her speech was American.”
Garner even went straight to the source to perfect Delvey’s blended German-Russian accent, recounting to The Hollywood Reporter how she visited the convicted felon in prison.
“It got super meta because she’s like, ‘So how are you playing me?’ I said, ‘Well, you’re very complex. Your accent’s really hard.’ She’s like, ‘Oh my God, how do you sound like me? You have to do it.’ She just was freaking out.”
The nine-episode limited series premieres on Feb. 11 and also stars Laverne Cox, Arian Moayed, Anna Chlumsky, and Katie Lowes.