14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

By | July 23, 2019

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14. Jim Carrey-

Jim Carrey- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

The actor and comedian have brought us tears of joy, starring in notable roles like The Mask, Dumb and Dumber, and Bruce Almighty. With a career spanning more than ten years, what many people might not know is the actor hails from Canada. Born in Newmarket, Ontario, Canada; he lived in Burlington, Ontario for eight years. Before his career took off, Carrey was struggling to make a name for himself. He started off working at Toronto comedy clubs as a stand up comic before getting his big break in movies. Carrey became a naturalized American citizen back in 2004. He stated moving to America helped him make his dreams come true. However, he still maintains his Canadian citizenship as well and says his upbringing in Canada has made him the person he is today and will always be proud of being Canadian.

13. Natalie Portman-

Natalie Portman- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

Born Natalie Hershlag, the Black Swan actress, was born in Jerusalem. Her mother is American, and her father is Israeli. From the age of three years old, she grew up in Jericho, New York. Before moving to New York, she and her family first lived in Washington D.C before moving to Connecticut in 1988 and making the final move to Long Island in 1990. Growing up, Portman learned Hebrew and even moved to Israel in 2004 to attend the Hebrew University of Jerusalem to take several graduate courses. The actress holds both a dual citizenship in Israel and America. She mentioned that even though she loves the United States, Portman feels most at home in Jerusalem and frequently visits Israel when she can.

12. Tommy Chong-

Tommy Chong- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

Best known for his marijuana themed references as half of the duo Cheech and Chong; the comedian was born in Edmonton, Alberta Canada. His father, a Chinese truck driver, came from China to Canada in the 1920’s. He grew up in Calgary where he formed a teen club with friends until he moved his band to Vancouver. From 1964 to 1969, he ran four different nightclubs before he and friends disbanded the group a short period later. Chong eventually reached mainstream success when he teamed up with Cheech Marin where they expressed their views on free love, drugs, and counterculture movements. In the late 1980’s Chong became a naturalized citizen of the United States and his daughter Rae Dawn Chong became a naturalized citizen as well.

11. Charlize Theron-

Charlize Theron- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

The Academy Award winning starlet was born in South Africa. Growing up, she danced and modeled and even spent a year modeling throughout Europe before she and her mother moved to the United States. In New York, she attended the Joffrey Ballet School where trained as a ballet dancer until she injured her knee. When Theron turned nineteen, she moved to Los Angeles to seek work in the entertainment industry. She skyrocketed to fame in the late 90’s before reaching mainstream success in the early 2000’s. Theron became a naturalized U.S. citizen back in 2007. She credits her motivation to travel the world as a factor stating that when you have a South African passport, it’s required to get a visa for every country, making traveling a nightmare.

10. Christian Bale-

Christian Bale- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

Batman isn’t American?! Say it isn’t so! Born in Wales, the multitalented actor’s career spans more than ten decades. But despite being born in Wales, the actor is British. If you’ve heard Bale speak in several interviews, you might be confused at times because he’ll talk in an American accent, only to talk in a British accent in another interview. The truth is when Bale is being questioned about a film in which he plays an American actor, he will speak in an American accent in order not to confuse the audience. Although doing this might just confuse the viewers watching altogether. If you watch any of his interviews back to back, you’ll notice that he subtly switch between an American accent in the start and gradually end with a British accent. But that’s what makes a great actor, being diverse in anything you immerse yourself into.

9. Mila Kunis-

Mila Kunis- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

Born in Ukraine, the actress does an excellent job of portraying valley girl Jackie Burkhart on That 70’s Show. Growing up in Ukraine, she has stated that her parent’s had good jobs and she grew up wealthy, but her family decided to immigrate to the United States because her parents saw no future for her and her brother there. So in 1991 when Kunis was only seven years old, her family moved to California with only two hundred and fifty dollars in their pocket. Kunis recalls her first day transitioning into an American school difficult because she didn’t understand the culture, people or the language. The actress stated she blocked out second grade completely and often came home crying every day. When she was nine years old, she started acting classes where she starred in commercials before breaking into movies. Her other work includes starring in Days of Our Lives, Baywatch and 7th Heaven before landing a role in That 70’s Show.

8. Seth Rogen-

Seth Rogan- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

The comedian turned actor was born in Vancouver Canadian where he started his stand up career when he was just a teen. He began performing in comedy clubs where he won the Vancouver Amateur Comedy Contest in 1998. Initially, Rogen didn’t want to pursue anything other than being a comedian, but when his father got laid off and his mother quit her job, they fell on difficult times. During this period, he attended a local casting call and starring in Judd Apatow’s tv show Freaks and Geeks. Despite being good in school, Rogen dropped out and started working for Apatow. He eventually moved his family to Los Angeles to start a career in acting. His breakthrough came when he starred in the 2007 movie Knocked Up alongside Katherine Heigl.

7. Lily Rose Depp-

Lily Rose Depp- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

The daughter of multi talented American actor Johnny Depp and French actress Vanessa Paradis, Lily Rose was born in Paris, France. She currently holds an American and French citizenship. When Johnny Depp married Vanessa Paradis, he learned French to communicate with her parents and even made Paris his home. When the couple split, Lily Rose stayed with her mother. Since her birth, Depp’s life has been a hot topic of media controversy focusing on her fashion choices and her decision to drop out of school to pursue an acting career. She is fluent in both French and English and recently started acting in 2014. As of 2016, she currently has four movies under her belt with much more to come.

6. Keanu Reeves-

Keanu Reeves- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

The Matrix actor was born in Beirut Lebanon and frequently traveled all over the world. After his parents split in 1966, he moved to Sydney Australia, then New York where his mother remarried and finally relocating to Toronto, Ontario. The actor primarily grew up in Canada. Reeves got his start in acting in theater productions and received a green card through his American stepfather and relocated to Los Angeles three years later. Reeves still maintains his British citizenship through his mother and still holds his Canadian citizenship through naturalization. Since he spent most of his upbringing Canada, he still identifies as Canadian. Even though his biological father was born in the United States, Reeves wasn’t able to obtain American citizenship at the time because he was not eligible to claim automatic citizenship by birth abroad to one United States citizen.

5. Nina Dobrev-

Nina Dobrev- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

The Vampire Diaries starlet first rose to the big screen back in 2006. Born in Sofia Bulgaria, moved to Toronto, Ontario when she was two years old. Dobrev started modeling at a young age, starring in commercials before making the big jump to acting. She got her first big break playing Mia on Degrassi: The Next Generation. Dobrev left the show and moved to the United States when she won the lead role of Elena Robbert. She first lived in Atlanta, Georgia while filming the show before making Los Angeles, California her permanent home. When she isn’t busy acting, she enjoys traveling as well as competing in various sports that include soccer, swimming, wakeboarding, and volleyball. She also loves to travel and has often traveled to Europe for vacation and to compete where she represented Canada in Aesthetic gymnastics.

4. Dave Matthews-

Dave Matthews- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

The rock and roll musician best known as the guitarist for the Dave Matthews Band was born in Johannesburg, South Africa. But the actor is no stranger when it comes to traveling as his family frequently moved a lot during his childhood. When he was two years old, his family made the move to live in Westchester County, New York. A couple of years later, his family moved to England for a year before coming back to the big apple. After his father had died from lung cancer, they returned to Johannesburg in 1977. Matthews returned to New York in the 1980’s to work at IBM before he turned his focus to his music. Matthews has dual citizenship and says he still visits South Africa at least once a year. He mentioned that he stays there for a month to let loose where he can lose himself and gain awareness all over again.

3. Lauren Cohan-

Lauren Cohan- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

Best known for portraying Maggie Greene on AMC’s hit show The Walking Dead; the multitalented actress is British and American. Cohan was born in Cherry Hill, New Jersey and the actress and her family moved to the United Kingdom when she was just 13 years old. She grew up in Surrey and even attended the University of Winchester. If you’ve ever heard the actress speak in interviews, then you know how unique and hybrid her accent is. Cohan explained to Pete Holmes in a press interview that her accent is a mixture of New Jersey and has a British twinge. When Cohan’s career took off, she split her time between London and Los Angeles, so it was easy for her to switch back and forth between alternating her accent.

2. Kiefer Sutherland-

Kiefer Sutherland- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

Best known as Jack Bauer on the Fox drama show 24, the Emmy Award winning actor is actually British-Canadian. Born in Paddington, London, United Kingdom to Canadian actors Shirley Douglas and Donald Sutherland, and his family is well known in Canada. His grandfather, Tommy Douglas created Canada’s New Democratic Party and created the idea of a universal health care system. Sutherland lived in Los Angeles, California until he was nine years old and moved back to Canada. Sutherland grew up in Toronto, where he attended multiple high schools before returning to Los Angeles to start his acting career. He rose to fame in the 1980’s making his first screen appearance in Max Dugan Returns. The actor currently retains his British and Canadian citizenship.

1. Mischa Barton-

Mischa Barton- 14 Famous People Whose Real Nationality Will Surprise You

Even though Barton plays a girl next door and lives a privileged life in California, the actress is far from it. Born in Hammersmith, London, UK, she lived in the United Kingdom until she was five years old. They moved to New York City shortly after due to her father’s work. Barton became a naturalized citizen of the United States back in 2006, a few days after she turned twenty years old. She still holds her British citizenship as well and says that she likes people to detect that she’s an Irish-English girl who was raised in New York City and who moved around a lot with her father’s job.