Shannon Elizabeth became a teen movie icon with her breakthrough role in 1999’s “American Pie.” She played Nadia, the foreign exchange student from Czech Republic who Jason Biggs’ Jim wants to lose his virginity to before high school graduation. Elizabeth recently revealed on the “Inside of You with Michael Rosenbaum” podcast (via The Independent) that she was left “devastated” by the film after the post-production team screwed with her accent. Elizabeth said the accent in the film was not what she originally wanted.
“When I did American Pie, they called me in to do ADR,” Elizabeth said. “They were like, ‘We’re gonna play with the accent.’ So I’d say something and then they’d go, ‘Ok, do less of an accent.’ I was like, ‘Why are they messing with this accent so much?’ I had worked really hard with a dialect coach on this.”
“I told all my friends, ‘This movie’s gonna suck’ because they messed with my accent so much!” she continued. “I was like, ‘No, they’re ruining it, don’t watch it.’ I was devastated after ADR…A lot of people did say my accent was terrible and I’m like, ‘Yeah, ‘cause they messed with it – they didn’t let me do what I wanted to do.’”
Elizabeth said she only received “a couple thousand” dollars for her role in the first “American Pie” movie, which she was comfortable with as it was her first major role in a Hollywood studio movie. But that was no longer the case when it came time to film 2001’s “American Pie 2.”
“I walked away from a lot of offers many times,” Elizabeth said. “My lawyer and my manager and agent all thought I was crazy. They were pushing me to say yes. I just kept saying no. I don’t know why – I guess I had a number in my head I felt like they should pay and I got them to that number. You get 15 minutes, so you gotta milk it.”
Elizabeth went on to reprise Nadia in “American Pie 2,” and she appeared in a cameo role for 2012’s “American Reunion.”