Gerard Depardieu: France at risk of becoming a Disneyland for foreigners
French screen star Gerard Depardieu has complained that his home country is in danger of becoming a land of stinky cheese that is populated by fools.
The star of Cyrano De Bergerac claimed that France was descending into a theme park of stereotypes designed to draw in the tourists and added that he considered himself to be more a "citizen of the world" than French.
Speaking to Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera ahead of the publication of his book Innocent in Italy, the 67-year-old extolled the virtues of Russian president Vladimir Putin, who gave him a Russian passport in 2013.
Asked whether he still considered himself French, he replied: "No, I am a citizen of the world, France risks becoming a Disneyland for foreigners, populated by fools who do wine and cheese that stinks for tourists.
"There is no more freedom, people are manipulated."
He had a much higher opinion of Italy: "In Italy, fortunately, you have not lost your culture and your identity because you are a young country, born with Garibaldi.
"Unlike half of Europe which with the fear of migrants has become a little fascist."
Depardieu also sank his claws into the film industry: "The cinema no longer exists.
"There is a world of entertainment, people, terrorised by the Americans who no longer know which language to speak.
"There are 10 stars and they are all American. Their movies packed with special effects are games, and the rest of the movie is struggling to exist."