Q&A Interview with Grey’s Anatomy actor Kevin McKidd (J!-ENT Interviews and Articles)
September 30, 2011 by Dennis Amith
With the DVD release of “Grey’s Anatomy – The Complete Seventh Season”, J!-ENT’s latest “Grey’s Anatomy” Q&A is with actor Kevin McKidd who plays the character of Dr. Owen Hunt. And for regulars of “Grey’s Anatomy”, so much has changed with Owen since he first appeared on the show, as well as for Kevin McKidd (as seen in our last Q&A with the actor back in 2009).
Kevin has appeared in films such as “Kingdom of Heaven”, “Made of Honor” and “Trainspotting” and also on television for series such as “Rome” as Lucius Vorenus and “Journeyman” as Dan Vasser.
With the eighth season of “Grey’s Anatomy” having premiered on Sept. 22nd, to promote the release of “Grey’s Anatomy – The Complete Seventh Season”DVD box set, here is a media Q&A featuring Kevin reflecting on season seven of “Grey’s Anatomy”.
What can you tell us about Season Seven of Grey’s Anatomy?
Kevin: Season Seven has been a lot of fun to work on, especially as I got the opportunity to direct an episode this year. Directing was a very interesting learning curve for me and it’s something I’d love to do again on Grey’s Anatomy. It was a little overwhelming at the start and I spent a lot of time holding my hair and thinking, ‘I’m going to lose it.’ However, I really enjoyed it.
What did you love the most about directing?
Kevin: I especially loved the preparation, which involved me walking around the sound stages and sets by myself. I’d wander around the place playing all of the different parts in my head, and it was fascinating. I had a blast.
How difficult was it to direct your peers and co-workers?
Kevin: I was incredibly nervous in the beginning. I kept thinking to myself, ‘How is everyone going to react to my direction? How are they going to feel about it?’ I shouldn’t have worried because everyone was fantastic. I felt really touched and moved at how kind everyone was. They all went to bat for me because they knew it meant a lot and they knew I didn’t want to screw up. Let’s face it; failure was not an option.
Would you ever consider a career change into directing?
Kevin: Acting is still the thing that I love the most. Perhaps I could see myself directing an independent movie in England or Scotland at some point, but I don’t see myself having a career as a TV director. That’s not for me.
As a child growing up in Scotland, did you ever imagine you would go onto become the star of a huge American TV series like Grey’s Anatomy?
Kevin: Absolutely not. I always knew I wanted to be an actor, but I didn’t expect to get this far. To be honest, I was destined to become a plumber like my father, and as a child I remember thinking, ‘If I get as far as London, I will be lucky.’ I never left Scotland until I was 20 years old. That’s how sheltered I was, so to be here is pretty remarkable.
Does Los Angeles feel like home to you now?
Kevin: It does actually. I’m very happy here. I think we might go back to England or Scotland at some point, but there’s not much to hate about where I live. I’ve got a great job and the weather is pretty special here in Southern California. I’m not in any rush to go anywhere else.
When you joined the show, were you nervous of your competition with McDreamy and McSteamy?
Kevin: I wasn’t because I knew I was coming onto the show to be Cristina Yang’s love interest for a while. I knew I had a specific job to do, so I didn’t feel like I was coming in to be thrown into the mosh pit.
What else can you tell us about Season Seven?
Kevin: There’s a musical episode in Season Seven, which was great fun to work on. It’s meant to act as a love letter to the long-term fans of the show, and there’s a gripping storyline in the episode. What else happens? Well, my character has an interesting love life in Season Seven, too.
Is that because he has feelings for two women: Teddy Altman and Cristina Yang?
Kevin: A lot of viewers think differently about this, but Teddy and Owen never actually hooked up. They never did it. They almost made out, but it was just breathy talking. I’m not exactly a purist, but Owen has only slept with one woman on the show.
Will Cristina and Owen’s relationship survive Season Seven?
Kevin: You’re going to have to watch and see. They get married at the start of Season Seven, but then it gets pretty quiet for the pair of them. He helps her through her Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder issues, so that book has closed – but there are going to be problems again for them in the future.
What problems will they face?
Kevin: They are two very complex people, so I think they’re always going to have a rocky road. Their relationship exists in angst, but there is a big disagreement on a fundamental subject in their marriage that they have to deal with in Season Seven. They have very opposed views on a certain issue and because they rushed into this marriage they didn’t ask certain important questions to each other before they put the rings on their fingers.
What did you think of the dramatic final to Season Six?
Kevin: I think the finale to Season Six rebooted the show in a really healthy way. It was a genius storyline, although it was a little shocking to discover Owen was going to be shot. Often, we don’t find out about storylines until we sit down for the table read, so I had no idea that Owen was going to be in trouble.
You had no idea that your character was going to be shot?
Kevin: I knew nothing about it until I opened the script at the table read. The shooting was described at the end of a page in the script. Boom! Owen is shot, and then Cristina says to Meredith, “Is Owen dead? Is Owen dead?” Then it was a page turn of the script, and it was the longest page turn ever. The whole world slowed down for a second – and then I turned the page to discover I could keep paying my kids’ school fees. Owen survives! Phew. What a relief. I was over the moon.
Grey’s Anatomy the Complete Seventh Season is now available on DVD.
Photo credit: ABC/BOB D’AMICO
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