Catherine O'Hara Reveals Where Schitt's Creek Character Moria's Unusual Accent Comes from
"I now describe it as the result of Moria and John's world travels when they had money," Catharine O'Hara said
If you’re a fan of Schitt’s Creek, you may have noticed Moira’s unusual accent.
In a recent interview with Variety alongside her TV husband Eugene Levy, Catherine O’Hara answered burning questions about her acclaimed character, including how her peculiar way of speaking came about.
“I have the emails, and I’m saying to Eugene, ‘Someone who is learning a different word every day and tries to slip them into conversations as much as possible. Somebody who’s world traveled,'” O’Hara said.
“I now describe it as result of Moria and Johnny’s world travels when they had money. Being the serious artist that she is, who observes people and culture and takes it all in, she then wants to share with the world,” O’Hara, 66, told Variety.
“What you’re getting when you hear her speak are oral mementos of her world travels. I haven’t come up with a better way to describe it,” O’Hara continued.
Of Moira’s accent, Levy, 73, said, “The first time we heard it was knockout — unreal.”
O’Hara then raved over her costars to Variety, explaining, “You have to work with lovely, smart, talented people who allow you to sound like an alien.”
“Just to have creative freedom is — I don’t expect to have it with other people. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to have done this with Eugene and Daniel [Levy],” O’Hara added to Variety.
O’Hara previously opened up about her character, telling PEOPLE in January that her fan base has suddenly shifted from mostly men named Kevin to, well, everyone she meets.
“I’ve met a lot of Kevins over the years who ask me to yell their name at their faces,” she told PEOPLE, referring to her famous line “Kevin!” from 1990’s Home Alone, when, on an airplane, her character suddenly realized she’d left her youngest kid at home on Christmas Eve.
“Now it’s mostly Schitt’s Creek,” she says. “It’s amazing. CBC [Canadian Broadcasting Corporation] made sure everyone in Canada saw the show, then Pop TV did a great job in the U.S. promoting it, and then Netflix just served it to the world. And then our lovely viewers, who watch our show, forced everyone they know to love to watch our show.”
O’Hara, who was recently up for the best actress in a comedy SAG award for her portrayal of Moira Rose (and what might be the most original, funniest, and over-the-top character on TV today), says she’s happy that the show — created by Dan and Eugene Levy — has grown so popular in such an organic way.
“It’s nice to start out slowly,” O’Hara said. “Daniel [Levy] had the stories mapped out from the beginning, but it’s so lovely and rare to be given that time to allow your characters to grow, to not have to tell the whole story right up front.” She adds, “That kind of freedom is wonderful.”
As for her newfound Schitt’s Creek fans, she says they’re extremely lovely and respectful when they bump into her.
“When you do comedy and you get recognized … I keep getting embarrassed thinking, I know them as well as they know me, and I’m forgetting why I know them,” she says. “I’m going, ‘I’m sorry, I can’t remember your name!’ And they’re like ‘No, we’ve never met.’ ”
She adds, “When you’re in comedy, people are just so loose and friendly and they think they know you.”
The series’s sixth and final season of Schitt’s Creek began airing on January 7, 2020. The series finale aired on Tuesday.