Depardieu gets Russian passport

Press Association6 January 2013

French actor Gerard Depardieu has received a Russian passport after flying to Russia for a late night dinner with President Vladimir Putin.

Depardieu sought Russian citizenship as part of his battle against a proposed super tax on millionaires in France, and Mr Putin granted his request last week.

Russian television showed Mr Putin embracing the actor as he arrived late last night at the president's residence in Sochi, the host city of the 2014 Winter Olympics.

The two men were then shown chatting over supper, discussing a soon-to-be-released film in which Depardieu plays Russian monk Grigory Rasputin.

Mr Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, confirmed today that Depardieu was given his new Russian passport.

French president Francois Hollande plans to raise the tax on earned income above one million euro (£813,000) to 75% from the current 41%, while Russia has a flat 13% tax rate.

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