Scottish independence: What have celebrities been saying?


People in Scotland will vote in the referendum on the nation's future on 18 September, when they will be asked the Yes/No question: "Should Scotland be an independent country?"

The debate has divided opinion, not least among celebrities - some of whom don't even get a vote.

So who has been saying what?

Shrek/Mike Myers

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The voice of Shrek, Mike Myers, expressed support for Scotland remaining in the Union.

When asked about the issue on BBC Radio Four's Today programme, the Canadian actor, whose parents are from Liverpool, replied in the voice of the Scottish ogre: "Shrek wants what the will of the Scottish people want."

Myers added in his own accent: "I love Scotland. I hope they remain part of Britain - and if they don't, I still love them."

Sir Sean Connery

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The James Bond star is a major supporter of the Scottish National Party and is convinced he will see an independent Scotland in his lifetime.

He said: "The "Yes" campaign has centred on a positive vision for Scotland. It is rooted in inclusiveness, equality and that core democratic value that the people of Scotland are the best guardians of their own future."

JK Rowling

image copyrightAP

Harry Potter author JK Rowling sealed her support for the Union with a £1m donation to Better Together, the official campaign to keep Scotland in the UK.

She wrote on her website: "My hesitance at embracing independence has nothing to do with lack of belief in Scotland's remarkable people or its achievements.

"The simple truth is that Scotland is subject to the same 21st Century pressures as the rest of the world. It must compete in the same global markets, defend itself from the same threats and navigate what still feels like a fragile economic recovery."

Rowling, who claims English, Scottish French and Flemish ancestry, also wrote: "When people try to make this debate about the purity of your lineage, things start getting a little Death Eaterish for my taste", a reference to the main villains in the Harry Potter series.

Brian Cox

Dundee-born Brian Cox, who supports a "Yes" vote, believes the campaign for Scottish independence is "getting there slowly".

The actor - who does not get a referendum vote because he does not live in Scotland - said there was "still work to do", but the polls were narrowing.

David Bowie

The 67-year-old artist surprised a lot of people by relaying a message to Scots through supermodel Kate Moss, in his acceptance speech at the Brit Awards.

The message declared: "Scotland stay with us."

Frankie Boyle

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The controversial comedian is one of many active supporters of independence on Twitter.

The Glaswegian recently spoke about his pro-'Yes' leanings with fellow comedian Kevin Bridges during an interview on Radio 4.

Sir Alex Ferguson

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The former Manchester United manager, who wants to see a "No" vote, says Scots like him who live elsewhere in the UK but do not have a referendum vote are equally entitled to their views.

"Eight-hundred-thousand Scots, like me, live and work in other parts of the United Kingdom," he said, adding: "We don't live in a foreign country; we are just in another part of the family of the UK.

"Scots living outside Scotland but inside the UK might not get a vote in the referendum, but we have a voice and we care deeply about our country."

Sir Alex donated £501 to Better Together - £1 higher than the £500 maximum that First Minister Alex Salmond proposed for donators outside of Scotland.

Kevin Bridges

The comedian, from Glasgow, told the Big Issue magazine: "If the referendum was tomorrow, I'd probably vote 'Yes'."

He also said the coalition was not working but that the Tory government was "good for comedy".

Susan Boyle

image copyrightPA

The popular singer who made her mark on Britain's Got Talent will be putting her mark next to "No", come September.

She told The Scottish Sun: "I am a proud, patriotic Scot, passionate about my heritage and my country. But I am not a nationalist."

Alan Cumming

image copyrightGetty Images

Speaking at the launch of the Yes Scotland campaign for independence, the actor said: "The evidence is clear - in the past 15 years we have become stronger economically, socially, culturally and globally.

"The world is waiting for us and I know Scotland is ready."

Cummings' attempt to secure a referendum vote by buying a flat in Edinburgh fell through, because his main residence is in New York.

Emma Thompson

image copyrightReuters

The Oscar-winning actress, whose mother is Scottish, says she can understand "the romance" of independence.

But when interviewed for the animated film Brave, set in Scotland, she said: "Why insist on building a new border between human beings in an ever-shrinking world where we are still struggling to live alongside each other?"

John Barrowman

The Scottish-American actor and entertainer - well-known for unpredictably breaking into a Scots accent - outlined his support for the Union during a Burns Nigh speech organised by Better Together.

The Torchwood star declared: "We are stronger when we stand together," and branded Alex Salmond the "pudding of our chieftain race", a play on words from Burns poem Address to a Haggis.

Annie Lennox

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The Aberdeen-born musician has said those with the power of a vote in the referendum must think carefully before making a decision.

The Eurythmics star wrote on her Facebook page: "Would breaking away from the UK bring long-term benefits, or would the cessation of union be an unmitigated disaster from which there would be no turning back?

"From my perspective, I think the issue is complex and there is certainly a strong element of risk. Personally, I'm neither a gambler nor soothsayer and my view doesn't count in any case.

"One thing I do know is that the decision is not something to be taken lightly, or to be swayed by heady patriotic emotion.

"It will be taken by the citizens of Scotland themselves, who need to seriously weigh up the pros and cons, as the responsibility lies wholeheartedly upon their shoulders."

Andy Murray

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Andy Murray has stayed relatively tight-lipped so far, having previously said he needed to read more on the subject.

But he has appealed for the head to rule over the heart, adding: "You need to figure out what's best for the country and then come to an opinion.

"I don't think you should judge the thing on emotion, but on what is best economically for Scotland."

Billy Connolly

image copyrightAFP

The Big Yin has decided not to vote in the referendum, saying he will be in New Zealand - the birth country of his wife Pamela Helen Stephenson - on 18 September.

The comedian said: "I don't want to influence anybody so I shut up.

"I think the Scots will come to a good conclusion in the referendum. They'll get what they deserve."