SHE has served pints at the Rovers, played a blinder as Bobby Moore’s wife and done her duty in the role of a British Army medic.
But Hollywood bigwigs still seem to think Michelle Keegan is Australian.
Despite finding fame with roles that are unique to this country, her proud Mancunian vowels have left Tinseltown’s power brokers and casting agents a bit confused.
The Stockport-born actress told The Sun: “Everyone in Los Angeles thinks I’m Australian.
“I’ve done auditions in my normal accent, then in posh English and in American as well.
“I change it up now and again, but you do tone it down a little bit.”
Michelle, 30, has spent the past few months tackling the notoriously unforgiving audition circuit in Los Angeles after filming finished for the fourth series of BBC1 drama Our Girl, in which she plays glamorous Corporal Georgie Lane.
And she believes the bruising role, which included lugging a 50kg kit bag through the 35C Nigerian heat, is the perfect preparation for landing a role in an action movie — following in the footsteps of her heroine Angelina Jolie.
Michelle said: “I’d love to play an action girl in a film, maybe something similar to Lara Croft. I got a real taste of it with Our Girl.”
Michelle, who made her breakthrough in Coronation Street ten years ago this year as barmaid Tina McIntyre, also boasts that she is in the best shape of her life.
Married to TV host Mark Wright, she insists any confidence issues have been ironed out and nobody — not even big cheeses in Hollywood — is going to tell her to watch what she eats and drinks.
She said: “As you get older you become more confident in yourself, and you know yourself a little bit better.
“I don’t care any more if I want to eat something, I’ll eat it. If I want to have a drink, I’ll have a drink.
“You only get one life. You’ve got to live it.”
Spending time away from Mark, 31, is nothing new for Michelle, who has been married to the former Towie regular for three years.
He spends large parts of the year in the US hosting celeb news show Extra and because they work on different sides of the world there has been much speculation their relationship is on the rocks.
But Michelle gives doubters the shortest of shrifts.
Speaking on the Greek island of Mykonos, where she was shooting a fashion campaign for online store Very, she said: “I ignore those rumours and just stay positive.
“There’s so much negativity behind the fact that if I work away and Mark’s away, it has to be a disaster.
“That’s the only negative I get from working away.
“I’m quite a positive person anyway so I don’t read all the negativity.”
But their future living arrangements are still far from certain.
While she jets between the US and the UK, he has just been offered another year on his US show.
Michelle stressed: “He’s been offered. I don’t think he’s signed yet.”
And she is adamant the decision to return for another year will be taken jointly.
She said: “It’s always been something that we will talk about. I’m just really proud of him. He’s done amazing and it’s a great job, so we’ll see.”
Next month Michelle explores her family history on BBC1 genealogy show Who Do You Think You Are?
She discovers her great-great-grandmother was a suffragette and knew the movement’s founder, Emmeline Pankhurst.
She said: “I felt a massive connection.
“I believe in fate and I do think there is a reason I did it this year.
“It marks 100 years since women got the vote and for me it was really important.”
Michelle had originally signed up for the show because she wanted to explore her maternal grandmother’s roots in Gibraltar and Italy.
But a surprise twist in the tale on her grandfather’s side brought her back to the Pankhurst Centre museum in Manchester.
She added: “We had just finalised all the shooting in Italy and the producers went, ‘Right, we’re going back to Manchester now.’
“And I went, ‘What? We’ve just been in Italy — why would you not want to end the show in Italy? It’s gorgeous.’
“So I knew something special was coming up and had no idea what it was, but I was excited to find out.”
Michelle’s episode opens the 15th series of Who Do You Think You Are? and comes a day after she returns to screens for her third series as Corporal Georgie Lane in Our Girl.
After that it is uncertain if she or the drama will return. Michelle said: “I don’t know, because there’s eight more episodes to go on TV.
“It just depends on how they go. I know there’s talk of it going on again but it’s not 100 per cent.
“But I do love the show and I love the crew and the cast and the production.”
If it does come back for what would be its fourth series, Michelle will have to brace herself yet again for the tough stretches of time away from her family.
Her latest stint involved eight months of filming in Nepal, South Africa and Malaysia and she said: “I get homesick and I miss my family.
“Luckily we have FaceTime now, so that helps massively, but when I go through experiences in my life, even when I was doing Our Girl, I was thinking the whole time, ‘I wish I could show my mum and dad where I am.’
“And I wish everyone could come out and see what I’m doing.
“But it’s nice to come home with those experiences and share them.
“I do miss them a lot when I’m away.”
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And did learning about her own intriguing history inspire her to continue the family line?
Michelle smiled and said: “Well, I’ve always wanted a family . . . ”
- Our Girl returns on June 5 and Michelle’s Who Do You Think You Are? episode is on June 6 at 9pm, both on BBC1.
- Michelle Keegan rules out permanent move to Los Angeles
- Mark Wright goes on a boozy boys night out with Olly Murs in LA while Michelle Keegan parties on a hen night
- Michelle Keegan hits back at haters and insists she ‘ignores all the negativity’ around long-distance marriage to Mark Wright
- Mark Wright ‘checks in’ with wife Michelle Keegan after wild stag do in Las Vegas
- Michelle Keegan hits back at critics over long-distance relationship with hubby
- Michelle Keegan can't sleep as Mark Wright parties on Essex stag do
- Michelle Keegan stares at her phone as she and Mark Wright party separately on Bafta night
- Michelle Keegan suffers sleepless night as Mark heads back to stomping ground
- Michelle Keegan struggles to sleep as Mark Wright parties in Faces nightclub for his brother’s stag do
- Michelle Keegan blasts ‘negativity’ surrounding her marriage with Mark Wright
- Mark Wright 'checks in' with wife Michelle Keegan after wild Las Vegas stag do
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