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Rob McElhenney learning Welsh and ‘can sing Hen Wlad fy Nhadau perfectly’

19 May 2021 4 minute read
Rob McElhenney. Picture by Gage Skidmore (CC BY-SA 3.0).

Rob McElhenney is learning Welsh and can sing Hen Wlad fy Nhadau perfectly, according to the journalist who co-starred with him in a video about Wrexham AFC which has gone viral online.

Maxine Hughes who is from Conwy originally but now lives in the US appeared as a reluctant Welsh translator in an online advert for a series on actors Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds’ purchase of the football club which will be broadcast on FX.

She begins the humorous video by translating their words accurately but soon goes off-piste and starts criticising their knowledge of Wales and ability to run a football club.

However in real life both were extremely passionate about Wales, she told BBC Radio Cymru.

“They’re fantastic guys and I was stunned how much they really love what they’re doing at Wrexham and the fact they’re doing this project,” Maxine Hughes said. “They’ve learnt so much about Wales and so much about Wrexham.

“Rob McElhenney is learning Welsh. When I was on the set with them Rob McElhenney was singing Hen Wlad fy Nhadau – perfectly. It was amazing.

“We were speaking for at least an hour with Rob about Wales and they were talking about the fact that they wanted to ensure that there was Welsh in the documentary too.”

She added that they were “lovely” and “so supportive when we were filming,” she said.

“Ryan directed a lot of it really. We did the run-through and filmed what was on the script and then we just had fun, and what you see at the end of the small film is us just having fun and doing improv really. It was so much fun.”


During the advert, Maxine is heard translating everything they have to say – with a few creative additions.

“We thought it was only appropriate for our Welsh fans to have a translator,” Ryan Reynolds says.

However the translator has other ideas, and is heard to say in Welsh: “The tall and skinny one makes movies and the muscular one sells cream cheese from Philadelphia, or something.”

“Did she say Philadelphia, because I didn’t say Philadelphia?” Rob McElhenney asks.

“Oh no, it’s Welsh. It is Welsh rob,” Ryan Reynolds answers. “It probably just sounds like Philadelphia. Maxine, how do you say Philadelphia in Welsh?”

“Philadelphia,” she answers. “There is no hope these two can manage a football club. And the one with the toupee thinks Wales is in Scotland. Neither of these men have ever pleased their wives sexually. They will both die alone in their mansions, gripped fiercly by the cold, indifferent embrace of pure loneliness.”

“Can you say, no one wants to see another Deadpool?” Rob McElhenney asks later.

“This one thinks he’s so funny,”  the translator says.


FX has placed a two-season order for Welcome to Wrexham, a docuseries tracking the dreams and people of Wrexham as two Hollywood stars take ownership of the town’s historic yet struggling football club.

“Rob McElhenney has been an all-star on Team FX for years and now has partnered with the formidable Ryan Reynolds to bring glory to the ‘Red Dragons’ in the docuseries Welcome to Wrexham,” said Nick Grad, President, Original Programming, FX Entertainment.

“Rob and Ryan will take fans inside the sport as never before, pairing their genuine love for the game with the welcome challenge of building on the heritage of this club.”

Welcome to Wrexham will be executive produced by McElhenney, Reynolds, Nick Frenkel and John Henion. The series is produced by Broadwalk Pictures.

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2 years ago

Roedd Maxine yn gret yn y fideo.

Gary Owen
Gary Owen
2 years ago

Eicon Newydd!

Tom Pritchard
Tom Pritchard
2 years ago


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