facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search

Chechnya says it would welcome French actor Gerard Depardieu

Dec. 20, 2012 at 9:10 PM   |   Comments

| License Photo
PARIS, Dec. 20 (UPI) -- Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov has invited Gerard Depardieu to move to the eastern European country now the actor confirms he is leaving France.

Depardieu reportedly has bought a house in Belgium and plans to seek citizenship there because of France's steep taxes.

Although the French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault publicly called the move "pathetic," Kadyrov said he is "ready to welcome the great artist" to his republic, Radio France Internationale reported.

France has a 75 percent tax rate for incomes more than 1 million euros ($1.3 million).

Depardieu, 63, defended his actions in an angry open letter to the prime minister published in the newspaper Journal du Dimanche.

"I'm leaving because you think success, creation, talent and anything different should be punished. I am sending you back my passport and social security, which I have never used," Depardieu wrote in the letter, adding the reasons behind his plan to leave France are "numerous and personal."

"I've no place to complain or to boast, but I refuse to be described as pathetic," he said.

The Wall Street Journal said Ayrault's office declined to comment on the letter.

Le Monde said Depardieu told friends Russian President Vladimir Putin had "already sent me a passport," but Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov later said the actor "most likely he was joking."

Depardieu is best known for his work in the films "Green Card" and "The Man in the Iron Mask." He plays a supporting role in the current release "Life of Pi."

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended Stories
Most Popular
1
Jennifer Aniston surprised by Justin Theroux during photo shoot
2
Jessica Alba covers Maxim in bikini, talks self-confidence
3
Gisele Bundchen poses with her dog during beach vacation
4
Beyonce Knowles shares family photo amid divorce rumors
5
Amy Winehouse's dad to release new album for charity
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback