"How would Pepe LePew be situated if he went to a speech therapist and ended up sounding like a regular skunk? Why, his dating opportunities would stink." --Reg Henry
I admit that I've tried my darndest to lose my foreign accent. I don't find Anglophone accents at all charming outside of our (now vast) English-speaking world. I can't stand Patricia, the character played by Jean Seberg in À bout de souffle, precisely because she has such an annoyingly stereotypical American accent. I remember sitting in the darkened classroom of my French Film class, cringing every time I heard a line in that hideously ugly accent.
Many of my fellow college classmates speak French the same way they speak English: they just substitute French words, but make no effort to use the correct stress patterns or idiomatic expressions. These people have a French degree on paper, but leave them alone for a week in Nice and they'd get laughed all the way home.
Of course, I'm biased, and will readily admit that I harbor a double standard. I don't think I'd ever argue that a Frenchman should try to lose his accent when speaking English. It's just too adorable. Don't get me wrong--I love British accents and love imitating them...my parents are ready to disown both me and my aunt because we talk to each other in a cockney accent--I just hate it when no attempt is made at linguistic assimilation.
French people realize that I'm foreign; that is something that I'll never be able to change until they find a way to alter the fabric of the human brain and vocal cords. But most of them can't figure out where I'm from, which allows me to play a fun guessing game. Most Frenchmen guess that I'm from Italy, not a far stretch. But as soon as my best friend came to visit me, with her blonde hair and enormous, dazzingly-white smile, people started immediately and automatically switching to English when they saw us coming. I took it as an insult (of course), but it's just the other end of the stereotypical spectrum, I suppose.