HOLLYWOOD actor Kevin McKidd has said he would vote in favour of Scottish independence if he were eligible to take part in next year’s referendum.
Speaking as he prepared to lead the 15th annual Tartan Day parade in New York City, McKidd, 39, said he was sorry he would not be able to help determine his country’s future.
Born and raised in Elgin, the star of Grey’s Anatomy, Brave and Trainspotting now lives in California, and so will not have a vote in the independence ballot.
However, he urged those still living in his homeland to vote Yes.
“If I could vote, I’d vote Yes,” he said.
“A lot of people think we’re all going to fall flat on our face if we do this. We’re too feisty a people to let things turn bad if we went and tried it. Why not? Why not try at least?”
As Grand Marshall of the parade, McKidd led about 2,000 people along Manhattan’s Sixth Avenue on Saturday. The event is a highlight of the Tartan Day celebrations, which commemorate the role Scots played in the building of the United States, and recalls that almost half of those who signed the American Declaration of independence were of Scottish descent.
The parade is usually held on the weekend nearest 6 April – the anniversary of the Declaration of Arbroath, which asserted Scottish independence in 1320.
Previous grand marshals at the New York parade have included actors Sir Sean Connery, Brian Cox and Alan Cumming, who all support Scotland becoming an independent country.
McKidd said his Scottish background had contributed to his success in the US. “I think, definitely, being Scottish has made my life easier,” he said. “It seems to open doors over here. Americans seem to think we’re exotic.”
The actor, who plays Dr Owen Hunt in the hit TV series Grey’s Anatomy, said he still cannot quite believe his own screen success.
“I’m just a teuchter from Elgin really,” he said. “I’m doing all this acting and I’m directing now, and I’m living in Hollywood – it seems bizarre to me.”