Peacemaker: John Cena Had No Idea Freddie Stroma Was British Until They Wrapped Production

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Last night, James Gunn joined some of the cast of Peacemaker for a watch party of the HBO Max show’s fourth episode, “The Choad Less Traveled.” During the online event, Gunn shared some fun stories about creating the series, including the fact that he asked his friend Elizabeth Banks to verify whether or not Freddie Stroma was an “as*hole” before agreeing to cast him. Thankfully, Banks vouched for the Harry Potter alum, who now plays Adrian Chase, the sociopathic costumed killer known as Vigilante. Since Stroma is best known for playing Cormac McLaggen in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, it’s fairly common knowledge that he’s British. However, it turns out his Peacemaker co-star, John Cena, had no idea the actor was from the U.K. until they wrapped production.

“Freddie is magic. And always completely prepared. And a great dude,” James Gunn shared on Twitter. “Part of what made me very slow on the uptake of who Stroma was is his handling of his American accent. Plenty of otherwise very accomplished and talented UK actors have great trouble with it,” one fan replied. “Fun fact: @freddiestroma spoke in an American accent the whole time he was shooting & hanging with us, for months. @JohnCena nearly fell over when we wrapped & he had a British accent,” Gunn revealed. You can check out the tweet below:

Fun fact: @freddiestroma spoke in an American accent the whole time he was shooting & hanging with us, for months. @JohnCena nearly fell over when we wrapped & he had a British accent. #Peacemaker #PeacemakerParty https://t.co/Qi15j3PkWE

— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) January 23, 2022

During a recent interview with ComicBook.com, Stroma broke down his approach to playing Vigilante.

“Basically, I realized pretty early on that this is a departure from the Adrian Chase that the DC world knows,” Stroma explained in our interview. “My brother’s actually given me fifty Vigilante comics. I’m on #12 right now, and I can’t draw any comparisons. This is a completely different character. So, I knew that research into Adrian is more out of respect for the character. As for the actual playing of the role, it’s what was on the page that James wrote. It’s a completely different character. So that’s kind of the direction I went in with that.”

In addition to Cena and Stroma, Peacemaker stars Danielle Brooks as Leota Adebayo, Robert Patrick as Auggie Smith, Jennifer Holland as Emilia Harcourt, Steve Agee as John Economos, Christopher Heyerdahl as Captain Locke, Chukwudi Iwuji as Clemson Murn, Lochlyn Munro as Larry Fitzgibbon, Annie Chang as Sophie Song, Elizabeth Faith Ludlow as Keeya, and Rizwan Manji as Jamil.

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New episodes of Peacemaker debut on Thursdays exclusively on HBO Max.

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