So Many Movies, So Many Odd Spellings

So many movies, so many funny names.

I come here today not to clobber you over the head with a doozie of a show-stopper. Perhaps another month.

No, since my last contribution to BoFN, I’ve sat in the darkened theater four times and then had to type-type-type-type names connected with the quartet of films for my weekly blog review and always had to check-check-check-check the funny spellings of these funny names on the IMDb site to make sure I’d gotten them right.

Shall we start backward, from yesterday’s entry?

Not singing its praises.

Not singing its praises.

The Age of Adaline was the movie. Fantasy plot starring Blake Lively and Michiel Huisman.

Adaline with that second ‘a’ is correct, as much as I hated it every time I had to mention the title of the dang movie. I guess I grew up knowing too much about barbershop quartets and that song Sweet Adeline. Yes, make that my Adeline, as far as preferred spelling goes.

Blake Lively is the female lead. Obviously, looking at her above and if you know her from her successful TV run of Gossip Girl, which I don’t. And old-school me still considers Blake as a man’s name. So I sent to for a little back up, and, sure enough, 26 of 28 of the photos of famous Blakes were men. I think. I couldn’t be sure about one of them. OK. Just clicked. Make that 27 of 28.

Coming down from the Throne.

Coming down from the Throne.

I am not too happy about the second syllable of sir Huisman’s name, either, a sure trip-up to spellers in my country every time, but he gets more of a pass because he was born in Amstelveen, Noord-Holland, where Michiels may indeed outnumber Michaels. Games of Thrones fans may be comfortable with his name in every way by now, but, again, I don’t watch. Please finish reading before you bash me.

On and on and on.

On and on and on.

Last week’s viewing of Paul Blart: Mall Cop II offered the chance to gape at the silliness of Ana Gesteyer, playing the wife of a security guard. Fine comic Ana — pedigreed from her six-year stint on Saturday Night Live in its early days, no less — was wallowing in a poor picture as much as the rest of the cast, leaving me plenty of time to wonder where her parents put the second ‘n’ when she was born in Washington, D.C. So do we say Anna, flat, or Ana, long? OK, all sites report On-ah.

Lucky Leonard.

Lucky Leonard.

In Danny Collins Aarti Mann played Nurse Nikita. She had a smallish role, but a face I remembered from a TV show I actually watch. Aarti played Priya Koothrappali for two seasons on The Big Bang Theory, sister of Raj and girlfriend of Leonard. By the way, that’s a stage name. She was born Aarti Majmudar in Connecticut.

A nathural born actress.

A nathural born actress.

Furious 7 brought Ramsey into the gang, a computer code wizard played well by Nathalie Emmanuel. I had to reach hard to strike that “h.” But I accomplished it for this Englishwoman, who also appeared in Game of Thrones.

All photos come from IMDb.


About markbialczak

Mark Bialczak is a veteran journalist. He started his blog,, in February, 2013, to write about music, entertainment, sports and life.
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22 Responses to So Many Movies, So Many Odd Spellings

  1. ksbeth says:

    sometimes it’s so hard not to ‘correct’ the spellings to what we think they should be. just sit on your hands and enjoy the ride )

  2. Pingback: The Blog of Funny Names goes to the movies | Mark Bialczak

  3. Arto says:

    Haha, these are great. Michiel is a surefire trip up.

    We call the trickier spellings of names “copy-pasters” around here because that’s the only way we don’t screw them up upon reproduction on the blog. It’s a pressing issue.

  4. kerbey says:

    I can still hear Don Pardo saying, “On-ah Gasteyer.” It’s so hard to remember. At church, we have a Laura and a Lara (like Lars) and then on TV, there is Lara Spencer (like Clara). So confusing! When I was in school, Blake was a very preppy name, and they were all boys. Is it any wonder that Blake Lively named her DAUGHTER James then? That’s not what James Taylor meant when he sang “Sweet Baby James.” And I’m with you on the Adaline. If it’s Madeline, then it should be Adeline. You’re just adding a letter. Some people have to get so original! This all reminds me that we have a convenience store down here named Bucee’s, and it’s pronounced “Bucky’s.” Drives me to the moon, Alice.

    • markbialczak says:

      Nobody knows how to spell, or cares that they want to spell it their own damn way, Kerbey. Bucee’s. That one woud drive me cracee. 😦

    • Dave says:

      Haha, “James” as a girl’s name is a first for me!

      Blake was a very preppy name for peeps in high school when I was there too. Weird how names go…

      Ugh… Bucee’s….. that’s just wrong! I don’t think there’s a single word word in the English language that has “uce” with a hard c sound!

      • markbialczak says:

        Only when ucking followed by a ucking ‘k’ King Dave. Bucees is still hacking me off!! And Blake could have at least spelled her little girl’s name Jaymes.

      • kerbey says:

        And it’s here to stay because it’s the size of a football stadium. It’s like a meg-convenience store with 25 gas pumps and bathrooms that wind around like a maze, and the bathroom stalls all have steel doors 7 ft tall (one foot taller than you) that slam shut like a dungeon, so you could dress a deer in privacy or do whatever it is that people do in a bathroom stall that takes more than 30 seconds.

        Oh, and one more thing that drives me nuts is when people say their name is Jamie and spell it Jaime. I’m sorry, but that is High-Meh, a hispanic male. People need to recognize. In the words of Cecily Strong from SNL, “Learn a book.”

  5. You solved a mystery for me on the whole Ana pronunciation situation. I’ve said it wrong for years . . . I think it’s because I’m a reader, not a “pronouncer”.

  6. Liz says:

    love it, Mark. Been fun to see contributors switch it up a bit. Kerbey did bdays, I completely bailed, you collected crazy movie names. Am sure Arto and Dave and Mark are up to good things, too. You’ve unleashed a rolling correspondence and methinks you should keep on keepin’ on with this format. Efficient for us readers, as we get buckets of names in one post. And as a writer, you don’t have to dig too deep for any one person. Your commentary is awesome. Woohoo!

  7. Dave says:

    I agree… I think Blake is a guy’s name, but I’ve gotten so used to women with men’s names – Riley, Cameron, etc. It’s far stranger to see a fella with a gal’s name.

    My answer for the Ana vs. Ana thing has always been to pronounce Ana as “on-a”, and to default to “an-a” for Anna. Doesn’t always work, but does OK.

    How do you pronounce Huisman? Any chance it’s pronounced like “Wise-man”?

    I agree with Liz, this is a fun format. Rolling commentary is always fun… gives you a chance to just riff off of things, and switch up your structure a bit! Super fun to read your stuff, Mark… even if it took me until 12:45am the next day!

    • markbialczak says:

      My first reaction on the name of ‘Game of Thrones’ dude was Weese-man. So I went to Google and YouTube meister amysays actually says Mik-Heel Youse-Man. OK! And she speaks clearly and enunciates it twice for you.

      This is fun, King Dave. And you’re never too late on your own site, are you? 🙂

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