Yes, Really – Shrek Nearly Had A Completely Different Accent, And We're In Shock

It's hard to imagine our favourite ogre with any other accent.
Shrek and Mike Myers
Shrek and Mike Myers

Shrek, the modern day Dreamworks fairytale is so embedded in our culture even 22 years after its release that there are Shrek raves, Shrek Crocs, and even Shrek makeup sets. We just can’t get enough of our favourite ogre and his friends, it seems.

And what is Shrek without his signature, gruff Scottish accent? What is the word ‘donkey’ if you’re not hearing it as “DONK-AYYY”? Even as a Scottish person who knows how inaccurate Shrek’s accent is, I’m completely charmed by it.

However, if it hadn’t been for Mike Myers digging his heels in, we might not have ever heard it.

People over on TikTok are currently talking about this with one person commenting, “it’s cause Michael Myers can ONLY do a Scottish accent” but another saying, a little more kindly, “always really nice when a big actor shows appreciation for a quality piece of animation they’re in, rather than treating it as a childish paycheck”.


How Mike Myers changed Shrek’s accent

So, you might want to sit down for this one. Shrek’s accent was almost... Canadian. Well, it was almost Mike Myers’s iconic voice, and he’s from Canada. In fact, the film was entirely recorded with Myers’ own voice until he suggested a change should be made.

Speaking to Vanity Fair in 2022, Myers said that Shrek with a Canadian accent, “just didn’t have any ‘oomph’” and he requested a re-recording of his voice in Scottish because as the film is a fairytale and his experience of fairytales are more Euro-centric. He also added that he has Scottish family and some Scottish background and what he thinks is that the Scottish accent is a “working people’s” accent and Shrek was a worker, too.

Flattering, I think.

In case you’re wondering, this is what Shrek sounds like with Myers’ voice:

While studio execs insisted that they liked the accent just being Myers’, Steven Spielberg himself decided to let the actor give it a try. While this did cost the studio money, Myers felt so strongly about this accent change that he did the re-recordings for free.

Myers also revealed that Spielberg sent him a letter saying, “you’re so right, it’s way better as Scottish, thank you so much”.

We agree. In fact, we can’t imagine it any other way.


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