Shortland Street - James Scott (Kiel McNaughton) Returns to Shortland Street

Shortland Street
Weeknights, 7.00pm

The nurses of Shortland Street have their worst fears confirmed this week with the return of former army man, James Scott, to the nursing manager’s role.

Scotty’s (Kiel McNaughton), last stint at the Shortland Street hospital left a few of the nurses trembling after they were hit with his by-the-book management style, which resulted in him being labelled, “The nursing manager from hell”.
Actor Kiel McNaughton says his character is aware his authority wasn’t overly popular with the nurses during his first stint at Shortland Street, but would definitely deny the label. “To some degree he is aware that he did cause a little bit of a stir amongst the nurses, but he doesn’t see himself as a nurse from hell,” says McNaughton. “He sees himself as being the best nurse he can be. He sticks to the rules and does what he believes every nurse should do. He can definitely be an intimidating character, but has adopted that persona in order to get his point across.”

While the nurses are fearful of Scotty, his reputation with upper management is close to perfect. Hospital CEO Chris Warner (Michael Galvin) happily calls him a “Godsend” after he agreed to take on the nursing manager’s role permanently. Brenda Holloway (Katherine McRae) was unceremoniously demoted by temporary CEO Craig Valentine (Renato Bartolomei) after falling off the wagon, a decision that was backed up by Chris on his return to Ferndale.

“He is really keen to take on the responsibilities of the role,” says McNaughton. “He is ready to step it up in terms of his professional career and he aims to make a mark at Shortland Street. It is a step up from his last job and I think this will result in him being even stricter than last time round.”

One of the more concerned nurses is newbie Shanti Kumari (Nisha Madhan), who has heard nothing but scary tales from the likes of Tania (Faye Smythe) and Maia Jeffries (Anna Jullienne). Maia and Scotty parted on a sour note after she accused him of homophobia following her failure to win the nursing manager’s role from Brenda. However, despite the negative aura surrounding Scotty, McNaughton remains positive and somewhat defensive of his on-screen alter-ego, insisting that viewers have yet to see the best of him, and if they remain patient, he will definitely open up in time.

“I really enjoy playing Scotty and I think he is interesting. He is very good at keeping a barrier between his professional and personal life but I definitely expect those lines to get blurred in the future. We will get to see a lot more of his personal life and viewers will get to find out what makes Scotty tick and why he is the way he is.”

Welcome back Scotty, this week on Shortland Street, weeknights at 7.00pm on TV2.

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