France Shocked After Putin Grants Depardieu Russian Citizenship

Category: World / Jan 03, 2013 11:12AM EDT
Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree granting French actor Gerard Depardieu citizenship, the Kremlin said on Thursday (January 3). 63-year-old Depardieu, a popular and colorful figure in France, has sought shelter outside his native country after tax increases by Socialist President Francois Hollande. In December Putin offered Depardieu a Russian passport in response to a question during his annual televised news conference as he heaped praise on Depardieu. A statement on the Kremlin's website on Thursday said Putin has signed a decree granting the actor citizenship. An assistant of Depardieu declined to comment.