These last years we’ve seen a boom in Latin or Spanish actors in Hollywood, so here at Spring Spanish, nos dimos a la tarea (we gave ourselves the task) of helping you pronounce 10 of these —often mispronounced— names.
Female Celebrity names
As you can see, the “I” has an accent mark, so we need to emphasize it, and let’s roll those Rs!
- Sofía Vergara es de Barranquilla, Colombia. (Sofia Vergara is from Barranquilla, Colombia.)
La musa de Almodóvar (Almodovar’s muse) has a name un poco difícil (a bit difficult) for people who speak English: there’s an accent in the second “E” and then… there’s another E —both should be pronounced the exact same way in Spanish, so avoid saying “Penelopi” Cruz.
Next, we have nuestro pitufo gigante favorito (our favorite giant smurf) Sorry! Favorite Na’vi, sorry Avatar films!
This is one of the names that are completely mispronounced. It is similar in the way that Zoe is pronounced in English, with the “E” sounding as an “I”, pero no en español (but not in Spanish), where it also has an accent mark: Zoé.
Her last name is tricky overall because, since English doesn’t have the letter “Ñ”, the name seems to have been adapted, but in reality, her name is Saldaña.
I’ve heard many times people saying “Selina”, pero recuerda que, en español (remember that in Spanish), the “E” is pronounced [eh] always.
This actress and singer was named after the late Selena, a very important Tex-Mex singer from the 90’s. ¿La conoces? (Do you know her?) Let me know in the comments!
Do you know how to get away with murder? Aparentemente Karla lo sabe (Apparently, Karla knows it), but do you know how to pronounce her name correctly?
Souza is a Mexican last name and all its vowels are pronounced a la mexicana, por supuesto (the Mexican way, of course), so instead of Suza, which sounds like sauce, we say “Karla Souza”.
Male Celebrity names
Este actor chileno está de moda (this Chilean actor is “in”), from playing Oberyn Martell in Juego de Tronos (Game of thrones) to the main character in The Mandalorian, a Star Wars Spin off —del que soy re fan! (of which I’m a super fan).
Uno de mis actores favoritos (one of my favorite actors), this Spaniard actor also has a last name that means “Flags” (Banderas)… ¿Sabías esto? (Did you know this?)
Yes, I know the world knows this cantante de salsa (Salsa singer) of Puerto Rican descent, but in reality, his real name is: Marco Antonio Muñiz.
We couldn’t let his TV mom be alone in this list, so Many Delgado, from Modern Family también fue incluido en esta lista (was also included in this list).
Born in the USA, but of Mexican descent, Rico Rodriguez's name might sound like a tongue twister, but if we roll the R, and say it slowly, I’m sure we can make it!
The main actor of “Machete”. So, remember to roll those Rs and pronounce the J as a very strong H in English.
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¡Muy bien! ¿Qué te pareció este artículo? (What did you think of this article?) ¿Me merezco un Óscar o no? (Do I deserve an Oscar or not?) ¿Tienes algún otro nombre en mente y quieres saber cómo se pronuncia? (Do you have any other name in mind and want to know how to pronounce it?) Let me know in the comments!
Feel free to check out the other videos on our channel. We also have a free, more in-depth Spanish training on our website where you'll discover the method we use in our Spring Spanish Academy to teach students to speak fluent Spanish. You also get some free sample Spanish lessons there that come straight from our Academy!