Nine “Foreign” Actors Actually Born in the United States

Bruce Lee, born in San Francisco

Hollywood has, since the beginning, attracted talent from across the globe. These days, it seems like there are more British actors working in Hollywood than ever before – and most are playing Americans! Anyway, here's a quick and dirty list about those heavily-accented foreigners who, in fact, breathed their first breaths, saw their first rays of sunshine, and pooped their first poops in the good old U.S.A.

  1. Mel Gibson. Once an A-lister, now box office poison, the Australian actor/director/producer was born in Peekskill, New York in 1956 to an American father and an Irish mother. The family moved to Sydney when he was 12. A longtime Malibu resident, Gibson's Aussie accent is practically nonexistent these days.
  2. Nicole Kidman. The Oscar-winning actress is more of a true Australian: her Aussie parents were studying in the US when she was born in Honolulu, Hawaii in 1967. They soon moved to Washington, D.C., but permanently returned to Oz in 1971 when Nicole was four.
  3. Saoirse Ronan. The Irish ingenue, who scored an Oscar nomination at 13 for Atonement and more recently starred in The Grand Budapest Hotel, was born in New York City in 1994 to Irish parents. They went back to Ireland when Saoirse was three. It's pronounced "SAIR-shuh", by the way.
  4. Bruce Lee. One of Hong Kong's greatest exports, the late kung fu superstar spent the first three months of his life in San Francisco's Chinatown, where he was born in 1940. Lee's father was a Chinese opera star who was touring the States at the time.
  5. Andrew Garfield. The lanky British actor, who may already be regretting his stint as Spider-Man, was born in Los Angeles in 1983 to an English mother and an American father. The family relocated to a London suburb when Garfield was three.
  6. Sienna Miller. This faintly generic British beauty was born in New York City in 1981 to an American father and a South African mother. She grew up in London from the age of one.
  7. Christopher Lambert. Best known as the star of the Highlander films, the cheesy French actor also first saw the light of day in New York – Great Neck, Long Island, to be precise. The year was 1957, and Lambert's French father was working at the United Nations. The Lamberts left for Switzerland when little Christophe was three. The budding young thespian grew up in Geneva and eventually settled in Paris.
  8. Sidney Poitier. The trailblazing actor's stately accent comes courtesy of the Bahamas, where he was raised, but he was born in Miami while his parents were visiting the city. Poitier was born two months premature; the family stayed for an additional three months until he was well enough to travel. He permanently relocated to the US when he was 15.
  9. Danai Gurira. The Walking Dead's katana-wielding zombie killer was raised in Zimbabwe, but was born in Iowa in 1978. (Her parents worked at a local college.) The family returned to Zimbabwe when Danai was five. Gurira's TWD costar Lauren Cohan could also be added to this list: she was born in Cherry Hill, New Jersey in 1982, and moved to the UK at 13.