May 16, 2013 — The actor accepted Russian citizenship in January after he denounced a proposed new tax on the rich in his native France. The Chechen connection is likely to rile human rights groups that have accused the president of the Russian republic of gross human rights violations. Depardieu will appear opposite Elizabeth Hurley in the first of the films.
Jan 3, 2013 — Gerard Depardieu has complained about high taxes in his native land. Meanwhile, he has befriended some of Russia's allies and is an acting icon in that nation. Also, the Russian leader may see a chance to tweak the West by claiming one of its wealthier citizens.