RISING Inverclyde actor Declan Laird has been praised by a Hollywood veteran after landing the lead role in a major pilot show.

The 21-year-old from Kilmacolm has impressed Brad Leland, the man who starred in critically-acclaimed American TV drama Friday Night Lights.

The pair were recently shooting scenes for a pilot episode of Amazon Productions’ new series Camp Abercorn, in which Declan plays the role of a London boy who gets sent to a US-style scout camp.

Promising young actor Declan believes the pilot could be his big break and he hopes it will catch the imagination of film bosses.

At the very least he has caught the eye of veteran screen star Leland and has another big-name to add to his ever-growing contacts book.

Declan told the Tele: “They seemed very happy with me and the director sent me a really nice email saying they were so happy with the work I did.

“It went very well and working with Brad was great — we got on well and had a laugh.

“Since we filmed the pilot Brad has called me and said he was really impressed by me and my professionalism.

“Everyone was happy with me and we just have to cross our fingers now that it goes ahead.

“It would be huge for me as the lead in a series like that.

“The show would be shown on Amazon but I think they also have a deal with E4 over here and I’ve heard a lot of their stuff is going to go on there.” Declan has also landed a key part in the official Coca-Cola World Cup advert.

The commercial is currently showing in the States but it’s expected to be broadcast worldwide in the coming days ahead of the start of the tournament in Brazil on Thursday.

On top of that, Declan was recently selected from a record number of applicants to take part in BAFTA LA’s coveted Newcomer Programme and he also featured in a new book called ‘Brits in LA’, penned by author Dawn Bowery.

He said: “I’ve got a bit of buzz about me with casting directors and I have a good reputation, which takes a while to get.

“I’m getting called in for roles and a lot of times I’m skipping the first stage now, which is a big thing.

“There are some bad days, but I’ve been having a lot of good days recently.” To keep up-to-date with Declan follow him on Twitter — @DMLactor.