Harry Styles will appear opposite Florence Pugh in Don’t Worry Darling, the second directorial outing from Olivia Styles about a couple living in an idyllic California community in the 1950s, ominously overseen by a mysterious top-secret company called the “Victory Project.” The film marks the first starring role for Styles after the former One Direction star replaced Shia LaBeouf early into production over reports of clashing with the rest of the cast and crew.
Styles didn’t get much of a chance to demonstrate his acting chops in the first trailer for the film, which was released back in May. However, that changed this week when Warner Bros. Pictures released an exclusive clip from the film to Rolling Stone, which was likewise shared by the official Twitter account for Don’t Worry Darling. In the clip, the lead character of Jack Chambers (Styles) seems to be at odds with his wife Alice (Pugh) over the Victory Project, which she begins to grow skeptical and suspicious of.
“Not everyone gets this opportunity. And if you keep talking like this, you’re gonna put it all at risk,” Styles says in the clip before taking Pugh by the shoulders and shaking her. “Our life, Alice. Our life together. This! We could lose this!”
But unfortunately, fans were left unimpressed by Styles’ accent in the film — though it isn’t entirely clear that the 28-year-old is necessarily supposed to be doing an American accent. Still, the takes came pouring out of the woodwork as people slammed Styles over his accent and acting.
One user even reacted with a rollercoaster GIF to sum it up, while others were similarly brutal. “He barely ate and left many crumbs. In fact the plate is still completely full, he just took a little nibble that he immediately spat back out,” piled on one fan, while another added: “In fact he threw up on the plate.”
Many commented on the seeming fluidity of Styles’ accent or the fact that he got paired up with acting powerhouse Pugh for his first major role.
Another user compared Styles to accent chameleon Charlie Hunnam:
However, others came to the artist’s defense by pointing out that’s just how Harry Styles talks. After all, again, nobody said that he’s trying to do an American accent, which he has previously proven he can nail even just in the context of One Direction music video hijinks.
In either case, we won’t have to wait long to find out whether Harry Styles can hold down an entire film — for better or worse, Don’t Worry Darling hits theaters on Sept. 23.