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02/12/2013 02:15 pm ET | Updated Feb 15, 2013

Idris Elba Overlooked For 'Django Unchained' Role Due To British Accent

With this year’s annual Oscar Awards less than two weeks away, Quentin Tarantino’s highest grossing film, “Django Unchained,” is up for five nominations including Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay.

And while the western-style drama has stirred lots of controversy since its Christmas release, the 49-year-old director has also admitted to passing on British heart throb, Idris Elba for the film’s lead role due to his accent.

“Yeah, Idris is British and this is an American story,” Tarantino admitted during an interview with London tabloid newspaper, The Sun. “I think a problem with a lot of movies that deal with this issue is they cast British actors to play the Southerners and it goes a long way to distancing the movie.“

“They put on their gargoyle masks and they do their phoney accents and you are not telling an American story any more. They are just making hay of it, whether it be James Mason in Mandingo or Michael Caine in Hurry Sundown, they get British actors to do this."

In addition to passing on Elba and selecting Jamie Foxx to play the lead role of Django, Tarantino also reportedly overlooked Chris Tucker, Terrence Howard, Will Smith, Tyrese, and Michael K. Williams.

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