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Sofia Vergara On Why She Kept Her Accent

It’s a well known fact that Sofia Vergara is one of our favorite actresses here at the the Tu Vez offices. Not only is she beautiful and talented but she is also a very positive roll model for Latinos in the entertainment industry. In an interview in this month’s Woman’s Wear Daily Sofia talks about that famous accent. It’s often the butt of jokes on her hit series Modern Family. It reminds me of another TV pioneer with a thick accent, Cuban deity Desi Arnaz. Much like Sofia his accent was laughed at but became one of his defining features. Sofia feels the same way and described her thinking,

“When I started acting I thought, ‘Oh, I’m going to move to Hollywood, I’m going to take the best speech class.’ I didn’t understand how Penélope Cruz and Salma Hayek had not fixed their accent. When I would go to auditions I would get super self-conscious of what I was saying, and I couldn’t concentrate on the acting. I was just concentrating on the pronunciation. One day I said, ‘This accent is never going to change.…I’m going to keep trying the way I am and, if it doesn’t work, I’ll go back to the Latin market.”

It’s weird to think that these kinds of issues still exist in the 21st century but the truth is that the entertainment industry is still fairly racist. We reflect on the past in which Martin Sheen and Anthony Quinn were forced to change their names to not sound Latino and think that those days are gone. The fact that it’s still a big deal that a Latina like Sofia Vergara is one of the leads on a prime time show tells us that we still have a long way to go.

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