Did you know that Jimmy McNulty is played by an English actor? Or Stringer Bell? Well, it’s true…
Dominic West, who plays McNulty, was born and raised in Sheffield. According to the book The Wire: Truth Be Told, he got the role of McNulty by sending over an audition tape of him self playing the part of McNulty and leaving out the other persons’ lines with long pauses as he didn’t have anyone to play the part against. This made for a very amusing scene which caught the eyes of the producers. Although he’s usually spot on with the Baltimore accent, in the scene below you can clearly hear his English roots.
In episode 22 season 2 he is also going under cover at an illegal brothel parodying an English man, which makes for a very funny scene considering he’s actually English.
King Pin Stringer Bell is skilfully played by Hackney actor Idris Elba. According to IMDB, he actually uses his American accent when talking to The Wire fans.
“Wherever I go the real hard-core drug dealers come up to me and confide in me. I almost feel guilty turning around and saying: ‘Ello, mate. My name’s Idris and I’m from London.’ I don’t want to break the illusion.”