5 celebrity names you’re pronouncing wrong

Here's how to sound smart when you're dropping these celebrities' names.

It's awkward when you mess up saying an acquaintance's name (and just the worst if you go years in a friendship without actually getting your friend's name right). So it's strange that so many of us talk about celebrities all the time while getting their names wrong.

Here are some often mispronounced celebrity names, so you can sound smart next time you talk about the people on TV. Or at least, smarter.

Chiwetel Ejiofor

This British actor got Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations for "12 Years a Slave." He also got called the wrong name all the time as a kid.

"It's a complicated name," Ejiofor said. "But it's okay."

Say it like this: Chew-it-tell Ej-ee-oh-for.


Gal Gadot

Director Patty Jenkins (right) works through a scene with Gal Gadot on the 'Wonder Woman' set.Director Patty Jenkins (right) works through a scene with Gal Gadot on the 'Wonder Woman' set. (Photo: Clay Enos/TM & DC Comics)

This Israeli actress is a wonder of a woman – a Wonder Woman, if you will. Gadot is close with her family, as evidenced by her mom's tendency to be all over her Instagram.

She has a pretty cool name, one that can sound silly if you say it wrong. Don't be tempted to get all American about it and think her last name rhymes with "spot." And don't be French and forget the "t." It's GaDOHT – it should rhyme with "oat."


Rhys Ifans

This actor, who played The Lizard in "The Amazing Spider-Man," comes from a very old culture. The Welsh language evolved from Celtic languages during the Iron or Bronze Age, time periods we are still trying to uncover.

So it's tough for modern American speakers to get their tongues around this particular pronunciation. But it goes something like "Reese If-fens."


Madchen Amick

Madchen Amick also played a heroin in Stephen King's "Sleepwalkers."Madchen Amick also played a heroine in Stephen King's "Sleepwalkers." (Photo: Wikipedia)

You probably know this American actress from "Twin Peaks." Amick is a woman of many talents. In addition to acting, she learned to play bass, guitar, piano and violin. She also has experience with modern dance, jazz, ballet and tap.

You may have been calling her Mad-chen. If so, stop it. Her first name is actually pronounced "May-chen."


Mads Mikkelsen

Mads Mikkelsen at the closing ceremony for the 68th annual Cannes Film Festival in France.Mads Mikkelsen at the closing ceremony for the 68th annual Cannes Film Festival in France. (Photo: Denis Makarenko/Shutterstock)

Another "mad" name, and again, don't actually made it rhyme with "sad." Instead, ignore the "d," and say it like "Mass."

If you've been saying it wrong, don't feel bad. This Danish actor's name gets mispronounced all the time. Luckily, Mikkelsen is a good sport about it.

“I don’t mind,” he said. “I think it sounds kind of cool.”

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