Gerard Depardieu: Americans 'have constantly destroyed others'

French Actor Gerard Depardieu Banned From Ukraine

Controversial French actorGerard Depardieu is perhaps better known these days for his politics and the controversy that surrounds him than for his acting. Now, once again, the Green Card star has caused a stir with strident comments on Americans and their history.

Speaking on French radio, AFP reported that Depardieu claimed that Americans are "a people who have constantly destroyed others," going on to illustrate his point with a selective U.S. history lesson. "They fought each other, destroyed the Indians. After that they perpetrated slavery, then there was the civil war. ... After that, they were the first to use the atomic bomb. ... No, I prefer being Russian," he said.

He added: "If the Europeans stopped listening to the Americans, well, I'd be a lot happier."

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Since taking Russian citizenship in 2013 after being outraged by what he saw as a punitive taxation regime in his native France, Depardieu has been a big PR boon for Russian President Vladimir Putin, taking every occasion over the last few years to extol the virtues of his new country and its leader.

Arguably France's most high-profile male actor, Depardieu has had mixed success with his recent films. He starred as scandal-tainted IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn in the biopic Welcome to New York in 2014 and also had a prominent role in the widely panned and ridiculed FIFA vanity film United Passions.

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