Global Lingo Blog

Megan Fox – not vain, just mistranslated!

This week saw a quote from Megan Fox circulate the US press which made her look rather self admiring and a little conceited.

The actress and model is reported by US Weekly as saying in a recent interview with French magazine Jalouse:

‘I live well with my image. I cannot complain. I wouldn’t trade places with an ugly girl’.

This of course led to commentary and harsh criticism of Fox’s apparent unconcealed superciliousness, particularly as she is a role model, whether she welcomes this accolade or not.

Now the debate has caused Fox to speak out on her Facebook account, saying that she was in fact misquoted and has in contrast always been strongly self-depreciating.

It was actually a mistranslation which caused the hoo-ha

Megan had given the interview in English and the magazine translated it into French to be published – easy.

It was when the quote was back-translated that the problem arose. The US press translated the French back into English and the comment was misrepresented and entirely incorrect.

Fox stated:

“Before this starts to circulate and spin into something else I want to address a ‘quote’ that has started to run from an interview I did with a French magazine called Jalouse. The quote reads ‘I wouldn’t trade my place with an unattractive girl’ Sigh. “The actual comment, the context and it’s intention are grossly distorted and misrepresented here. I gave this interview in English obviously, it was then translated to French and now back into English. I’ve never made vapid self-serving comments and in contradiction am uncontrollably self-deprecating.”

Not the first or last mistranslation

It’s not the first time a celebrity has been misrepresented when a comment has been translated back into its original language incorrectly or in the wrong context.

One example which we have previously blogged about is a back translated interview with Wayne Rooney, which portrays a wise and astute footballer who has presumably just been hiding behind an unsophisticated alter ego.

Maybe they used Google Translate? The web tool has developed a reputation in mistranslations and often produces erroneous text.

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