We thought he was heading to Belgium, but it looks like Gerard Depardieu has changed his mind and will be moving to Russia after falling out with his native French in a dispute over tax.
The BBC reports that a short statement has been released on the Kremlin website that reads: "Vladimir Putin has signed a decree granting Russian citizenship to Gerard Depardieu.” It’s good news for the life-loving actor, who last year announced that he would be giving up his French passport after the country’s government criticized him for wanting to move abroad, in response to them raising taxes on the rich.
We’re pretty sure that no-one has been on tenterhooks to see where the portly French thesp might end up, but It seemed at one point like Depardieu simply wanted to cross the border, to the Belgian town of Nechin. However, in a dramatic swerve, that plan seems to have been usurped for a plot to move further afield; indeed, back in December, Putin was already apparently aware that a move to Russia was on Depardieu’s radar. Perhaps he’s a huge fan of the star’s 90’s Musketeer capers in The Man In The Iron Mask, because he offered an open-armed welcome, saying "I'm sure the French authorities did not want to offend Mr Depardieu. But if he'd like to have a Russian passport, consider it settled," during his annual news conference on December 20, 2012.