Native Spanish speaker reacts to celebs speaking Spanish


April 25, 2024

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¡Hola! ¿Qué tal? Today we're going to analyze how some of the world's most famous celebrities speak Spanish. I’ll also teach you some Spanish while analyzing their speaking. Read till the end to discover if you make the same mistakes they do, and I’ll show you how to correct them. Let’s have fun while learning Spanish!

Let’s start with Selena Gomez.

In the video, she says “Muchos gracias”. It is “Muchas gracias.” This is very tricky, because mucho is an adjective and accompanies a noun, and needs to have the same gender and number. “Gracias” is feminine plural, so it needs to be “Muchas gracias.”

Then the interviewer asks: "¿Hablas un poquito español?" (Do you speak Spanish a little?) and Selena replies “más poquito”. This would be like “more little.” I think she wanted to say “muy poquito,” which means "very little." But we can understand what she meant, that’s what counts. 

Es complicado para explicar.” Here she says “it’s difficult to explain,” but we don’t use the preposition “para” here. It is “de.” "Es complicado de explicar."

Even though she has a Spanish-speaking family, she doesn’t know Spanish. She speaks it like she’s never heard it before. She is a third-generation American-Mexican, so it’s normal. But she tries her best, and that’s great.

Let’s now check Cardi B’s Spanish.

Cardi B says in an interview: "Espérate, que mi papá me está oyendo." (Wait, my father is listening.) ✅

You can tell she grew up speaking and listening to Spanish. This interview is fully in Spanish and she understands perfectly. 

"Yo sé lo que yo estoy haciendo." (I know what I’m doing.) ✅

"Yo estudio lo que yo hago." (I study what I do.) ✅

"Yo tengo parientes que siempre están pendiente de mí." (I have relatives that are always looking out for me.) ✅ I would say "Yo tengo parientes que siempre están pendientes de mí."

Yo nunca no era prostituta, bailarina sí.” → Yo nunca he sido prostituta, bailarina sí. (I never was a prostitute, I was a dancer.) 

Y sí, ahora ya tú sabes, ahora yo soy internacional, yo soy famoso” -> yo soy famosa

Sí, alguna cosa yo ha cambiado, tú sabes por qué yo ha cambiado?” -> Sí, alguna cosa he cambiado, ¿tú sabes por qué he cambiado? (Yes, I've changed some thing, do you know why I have changed?)

She is totally fluent and her intonation is perfect, but sometimes she makes grammar mistakes. I guess it’s because the language she uses in her daily life is English. She mixes some English while she talks, also. She uses the pronoun “yo” – “I” – a lot, and we usually skip it. That way it sounds more natural. But her Spanish is great – she’s bilingual.

Let’s go now with Viggo Mortensen.

Viggo Mortensen said in an interview in Argentina:

"Llegó un momento bastante tarde para empezar a pensar en eso de ser actor, a los 21 años, por ahí, que empecé a mirar las películas preguntándome “¿cómo se hace?” No solamente “me gusta o no.” Pero, ¿cómo se hace? ¿cómo es que… cómo es posible que esta persona en la pantalla diga o haga algo de una manera que me hace llorar o me hace sentir cosas…"
(A moment came, pretty late to start to think about being an actor, when I was about 21 years old, that I started watching the movies asking myself “how is it done?” Not only “I like it or not”, but how is it done? How is it that this person on the screen says or does something in a way that makes me cry or feel things…)

I was very shocked. I didn’t know he spoke Spanish. He speaks Spanish perfectly and he uses very difficult grammar. When he was a kid, he lived in Argentina for 9 years. He speaks Spanish as if he never left Argentina. It’s incredible, he has the best Argentinian accent. And I love the Argentinian accent, it is very sexy.

By the way, on My Daily Spanish we have a free study guide that offers a step-by-step process to help you learn Spanish faster. You can download it from the link above.

Let’s check Ariana Grande’s Spanish.

In a concert in Latin America, Ariana said:
"¿Cómo les gusta el show?" The correct way would be “¿Les está gustando el show?” (Are you liking the show?). That way is formal. Even more natural would be the informal “¿Os está gustando el show?” 

¿Están divirtiendo?(Are you having fun?) The correct way would be “¿Se están divirtiendo?” because the verb is “divertirse,” to have fun, and it has the reflexive “se,” which implies that it is you, yourself, who is having fun.
Me estoy divirtiendo (I’m having fun).
Estoy divirtiendo a mi hermana (I’m amusing my sister).

In another video, she said:
Hola, ¿Cómo estás? (Hi, how are you?)
¿Te gusta mi bandana? (Do you like my bandana?)
She is really cute speaking Spanish. She’s so sweet, it doesn’t matter what language she is speaking. You can tell she doesn’t speak Spanish, but she learned some sentences. Spanish speakers love seeing people from other countries trying to speak Spanish.

If you are enjoying this article, please share it with your friends! Gracias.

Let’s listen to Will Smith speaking Spanish.

I love the joy of Will Smith speaking Spanish! He tries to speak it every time he has the chance. That's key to learning a language!

This is what he said in an interview:
"En los EEUU la gente habla una idioma, pero todas las países del mundo la gente habla dos o tres idiomas." → “En los EEUU la gente habla un idioma, pero EN todos los países del mundo, la gente habla dos o tres idiomas.(In the US people speak one language, but in all the countries in the world people speak two or three languages).

"Gracias, gracias. Estoy muy contento estar aquí. Es mi primera vez aquí en Argentina. Necesito practicar más." → “Estoy muy contento DE estar aquí. Es mi primera vez aquí en Argentina. Necesito practicar más. (Thank you, thank you. I am very happy to be here. It's my first time here in Argentina. I need to practice more.)

Will Smith is doing great in Spanish. He knows the basics well and can create his own sentences. He would survive very well in a Spanish speaking country on a holiday. He says he needs to practice more, we see that when it comes to more advanced topics he doesn’t know the vocabulary and might also need to practice speaking more often, but he does really well and he has the courage to try to do the interviews in Spanish when he comes to Spain or Latin America. I have to clap.

And lastly, let’s check out Gwyneth Paltrow speaking Spanish.

Gwyneth Paltrow said this in an interview in Spanish:
"Bueno, cuando tenía 15 años, yo estaba de estudiando español en el colegio en Nueva York y la profesora nos han dicho bueno, hay una oportunidad ahí en España, de estudiar allí, entonces yo hacía un intercambio y vivía con una familia en el centro de España, cerca de Toledo." → “Bueno, cuando tenía quince años, yo estudiaba español en el colegio de Nueva York y la profesora nos dijo ‘bueno, hay una oportunidad allí en España, para estudiar allí’. Entonces yo hice un intercambio y viví con una familia en el centro de España, cerca de Toledo. (Well, when I was 15, I was studying Spanish in school in New York and the teacher told us “well, there is an opportunity there in Spain, to study there.” Then I did an exchange and lived with a family in the center of Spain, near Toledo.)

I am amazed at how well she speaks Spanish. Her accent is very good. You can tell she understands everything and has practiced a lot. She seems to be a very hard worker and she has put a lot of effort into learning. She makes a lot of little grammar mistakes, but you can understand her perfectly. She is advanced, she has a very advanced level.

Now, some tips to correct those mistakes that we heard:

  1. Think of the gender of each noun when you speak. A good way to practice would be to write an essay in Spanish and then review it finding all the nouns, think of the gender of each noun and check the words that accompany it. 
  2. Review the prepositions with examples of when to use each one. This is a very difficult part of Spanish, but you can also practice while watching series and shows in Spanish and writing the expressions with prepositions you hear. 
  3. Review the verb tenses and when to use each one. This is the more advanced step. You need a lot of listening practice to get used to when to use each verb tense. You can do it!!


I hope you enjoyed this article and that you learned something new. If you have suggestions or questions about Spanish don’t hesitate to leave a comment below. Have a great day!

About the author 

Lucía is a native Spanish teacher from Sevilla, in the South of Spain. She loves languages and has experience learning various of them. She graduated from the bachelor "Film and TV studies" in Carlos III University in Madrid and enjoys making and editing videos for social media.

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