"Irish Princess" Ayo Edebiri Is... Not Actually Irish?

Sara Belcher - Author

Jan. 10 2024, Published 6:45 p.m. ET

Ayo Edebiri holding up her Golden Globe award
Source: Getty Images

Actress Ayo Edebiri took home the Golden Globe award for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy TV Series, while her co-star Jeremy Allen White snagged the equivalent award for The Bear.

Though she's been acting since 2014, Ayo has risen to prominence with roles in Abbott Elementary, Bottoms, and, of course, The Bear. On the hit Hulu program, she plays Sydney Adamu, a sous-chef at The Bear (and also while it was The Original Beef of Chicagoland).

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Anyone who watched her take home her award saw her heartfelt and nervous speech, only for the internet to praise the "Irish" actress. Other Irish actors, like Cillian Murphy, took home awards that same night, but is Ayo actually from Ireland? The answer is a bit complicated, as it involves a long-running internet joke.

Ayo Edebiri with Jeremy Allen White holding up their Golden Globe awards
Source: Getty Images
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Is Ayo Edebiri from Ireland?

Despite the running commentary online about the actress being from Ireland, there's nothing in her family history to suggest she's Irish. Ayo actually grew up in Dorchester, near Boston, and her family has no real connection to Ireland. Ayo's mother is from Barbados and her father is Nigerian, and though it's possible through Ireland's connection with the Caribbean that the actress has some Irish roots, she's not actually from Ireland.

That hasn't stopped this from becoming a long-running joke for the actress, though. She and her fans have joked for a long time on social media about her heritage, and it's led to the country informally adopting her. She's even been dubbed an "Irish princess" by people online.

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The Film in Dublin Twitter account congratulated her for her BAFTA nomination, calling her "Ireland's own." This, of course, led to some confusion in the replies of the tweet, with some taking it as confirmation that the actress is from the island. But the Film in Dublin Twitter account only doubled down on its bit.

"For the record yes we do know where Edebiri is actually from (Ireland)," it tweeted.

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She previously joked in an interview with Letterboxd that she spent four months in Ireland for Banshees of Inisherin, though she did not actually act in the film. Throughout the interview, she speaks in an Irish accent before coming out of it at the end, saying she "slipped back into it."

"I literally — I was there, you know? I slipped back into it," she joked with the interviewer.

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"Irish person here. She is now claimed," one TikTok user commented on the Letterboxd video.

"I watched the movie hoping to see her [because] of this clip only to find out she was in fact not in the movie," another commenter confessed. Before you watch the two hour film, we can confirm the Jenny the Donkey is not a real character in The Banshees of Insherin.

Though Ayo may have no real connection with Ireland, we can't deny that her accent is spot-on (even if it's fake). It's good to know that should she ever be cast as someone from the country, she's bound to be accepted with open arms.

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