Timothée Chalamet thinks his name sounds "pretentious".

Timothée Chalamet

Timothée Chalamet

The 'Call Me By Your Name' actor doesn't worry about how people pronounce his French moniker because it seems like too much of an "obligation" to get it right, and he's stopped using shortened versions as he thought they made him sounds much younger.

He said: "My whole life I was Timmy and then as I got older, it seemed like Timmy was youthing me out, so it's been Timothée since.

"I tried Timo and Tim, too. The real pronunciation is Timo-tay, but I can't ask people to call me that; it just seems really pretentious.

"My dad is from France, so it's a French spelling, but it seems like too much of an obligation to ask people to call me that."

The 22-year-old actor speaks fluent French because of his father and he finds that acting in his dad's native language makes him much more "focused" because he has to think harder about the dialogue.

Interviewed by Frank Ocean for V Man magazine, he said: "When I act in French, it's really shocking to me how it feels more grounding than acting in English. I grew up speaking French with my dad, but it's not a language I have as much command over, so when I speak or act in French, the words mean so much to me; I'm so focused."

And for his role as Elio in 'Call Me By Your Name', Timothée had to learn Italian and always had an expert on hand to correct his pronunciation.

He said: "So much of 'Call Me By Your Name' is silent and plays out physically; there's kind of a push and pull. Acting in Italian, I'm really winging it: memorising how lines sound phonetically, just trying to get the intonations and mannerisms right, so the lines ring true to Italian audiences.

"We had someone on set that could correct me. Same for [playing] the piano and guitar."


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