Sir Patrick Stewart apologises to Europe for Brexit in 2017
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The British star, 80, is one of the nation’s most beloved actors and has been nominated for scores of accolades. He scooped the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role and has been shortlisted for Golden Globes, Emmys, Screen Actors Guilds, Tonys and more. Sir Patrick, who was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for services to drama more than a decade ago, revealed his frustration with Brexit in an impassioned rant.
Sir Patrick voted Remain in the EU Referendum five years ago and even joined protesters who campaigned for a second vote.
He was part of London’s “million-person march” three years ago and has continued to be a vocal opponent of Brexit.
The Star Trek actor explained his sorrow over the UK’s departure from the bloc during a Q&A session at Comic-Con Paris.
In between cheers, applause and a standing ovation, Sir Patrick admitted he was devastated by Brexit.
In 2019, he said: “It’s a disgrace that individuals in my country are attempting to separate us.”
Sir Patrick claimed it was hard to stand in front of the French audience and “represent a country” that voted for Brexit.
In the 2016 referendum, 52 percent of the nation – around 17.4 million people – cast their ballot in favour of leaving the EU.
Sir Patrick found it difficult to “represent” the UK because they were “seeking to break that invaluable connection” to the bloc.
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He told the crowd: “I want you to know that well more than half of the population of the United Kingdom wants to stay in the European Union.”
Sir Patrick’s claim went against the statistics from the referendum, as only 16.1 million voted Remain.
More than 72 percent of the UK cast their ballot in the referendum – a higher turnout than in the 2019 general election, where 67.3 percent of the public voted.
Sir Patrick listed the fall of the Berlin Wall, the end of the Soviet Union’s “dominance and control” and the end of Apartheid in South Africa among the bloc’s achievements.
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He also mentioned the Good Friday Agreement but admitted there “are still problems today” between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
Sir Patrick continued: “The European Union is all part of that movement and it is a disgrace that individuals in my country are attempting to separate us.”
Last year, the actor hit out again and described Brexit as “the saddest, grimmest thing that has happened to me”.
Sir Patrick felt leaving the EU was “very, very sad” and claimed it was the “grimmest” moment in his political life.
He claimed to have stopped pursuing US citizenship so he could vote against Prime Minister Boris Johnson in the future.
During a 2018 episode of The Andrew Marr Show, Sir Patrick claimed Remainers were “not opposing or calling for a second referendum” any longer.
He claimed everyone “respected” the decision to leave the EU before taking a stab at the Brexit negotiations.
Sir Patrick felt “the terms and conditions” of the “separation” from the bloc were “quite unlike” those promised during the 2016 Leave campaign.
He cited the “now infamous” £350million that “we were told would be made available weekly for the NHS”.
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Sir Patrick added: “Good lord, who knows that the NHS needs it!”
He branded Leave’s promises “misleading” and “untrue” before being countered by Marr, who cited Brexiteers’ argument that “it will come eventually”.
Sir Patrick laughed before he said: “What guarantees do we have of that?
“Which is why the campaign for the People’s Vote is simply requesting that we have another chance to consider what the terms of this divorce are going to be.”
Marr confirmed that Sir Patrick wanted the Government to put the Brexit deal to the public for another vote before leaving the EU.
The actor replied: “Exactly.”
Marr asked what would happen if “they say No” before Sir Patrick laughed again.
He said: “Well… I don’t know how they would deal with that but we would simply stay in the [European] Union, that’s what the vote would mean.”
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