Belfast Telegraph

British actors and musicians should stay in UK and ‘keep scene thriving’ – Kano

The east Londoner said the country’s finest should eschew the US to ensure the UK scene flourishes.

Kano (Matt Crossick/PA)
Kano (Matt Crossick/PA)

By Alex Green, PA Entertainment Reporter

Top Boy star Kano has said it is important British actors and musicians remain in the UK to ensure the scene continues to thrive.

The rapper and actor, real name Kane Robinson, said he had never been tempted to try to “crack” the US, despite people telling him he needed to.

Speaking on boxing promoter Eddie Hearn’s No Passion, No Point show on BBC Radio 5 Live, he said: “People used to say if you really want to crack it you have really got to go to America.

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Kano performing at the Great Escape Festival in Brighton (Victoria Jones/PA)

“But with the internet and the scene how it is … Americans are coming here more and more. They are looking at what we are doing.

“I think it’s important that we all remain here, that we stay here and keep this scene thriving.”

Kano, 34, who is about to release his sixth album Hoodies All Summer, added: “You don’t get that break, you make one.”

Idris Elba, Homeland’s David Harewood and Superman star Henry Cavill are among a slew of British-raised actors who moved to Hollywood to find fame.

Alongside Ashley Walters, Kano stars in the gritty east London drama Top Boy, which is returning for a third series with the help of Canadian rapper Drake.

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Idris Elba found fame in the US (Ian West/PA)

Kano said a lack of black role models at home reduced young black people’s chances of success.

“That is part of the problem, that lack of belief in yourself because you don’t see success around you,” he said.

“I guess that breeds defeatism, so yes there does need to be resources out there and support that will nurture talent that I believe is there, and passion that I know is there.”

The East Ham native said he saw huge amounts of talent close to home.

He said: “There’s so much talent around here, east London in particular is full of talent. Whether that be boxing or football or music.

“They are here. I just hope that things take a turn. There are loads of positive examples, I just hope if we are having this conversation in 10 years’ time that things are different.”

The full interview with Eddie Hearn for No Passion, No Point is on BBC Sounds.

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