While preparing to portray Wells, Malcolm McDowell obtained a copy of a 78 rpm recording of Wells speaking. McDowell was “absolutely horrified” to hear that Wells spoke in a high-pitched, squeaky voice with a pronounced Southeast London accent, which McDowell felt would have resulted in unintentional humor if McDowell tried to mimic it for the film. McDowell abandoned any attempt to recreate Wells’s authentic speaking style and preferred a more dignified speaking style.

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