Accents past and future
I came across an interesting article on the BBC News website today about the predominant use of British accents for characters in fantasy worlds, such as the Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings. Game of Thrones is apparently aimed at American audiences, adapted from books by George RR Martin, an American author, but almost all the characters speak with British accents. Also for historical dramas in English the default and expected accents are generally British. The article suggests that British accents add a “splash of otherness” to such productions, at least for American audiences.
On the other hand for fantasy films and TV series set in the future, on other planets and/or in space, American accents are probably more common than British accents. Although there are exceptions, such as Red Dwarf and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and some characters in Star Trek.
In plays, particularly those by Shakespeare, the default accent is RP (posh), although quite a few of the puns and jokes don’t work in that accent. Some productions in original pronunciation (OP) have also been staged, and were well received. In other English-speaking countries do Shakepearean actors speak in the normal accents, or do they use RP?
Are different regional or national accents associated with particular time periods in films in other languages?