Wailing in the hillsides as Hopkins becomes American
Friday 14 April 2000
Uneasy murmurings rumbled through the Welsh Valleys yesterday in response to the news that one of the country's most celebrated heroes has become an American.
Sir Anthony Hopkins, star of The Silence of the Lambs, finally confirmed his long-term love affair with America by becoming a US citizen, forfeiting the right to use his title in his adopted country. But people in his home town of Port Talbot accused him of "forgetting his roots", and there was even a call for him to be stripped of the honour he was granted by being made a Freeman of the Borough.
Hopkins pledged allegiance to the US during a small ceremony at the Federal Building in Los Angeles, entering as a British Welshman and leaving as an American Welshman.
From now on he will be known as plain old Anthony Hopkins, as he was before his knighthood in 1993.
In addition to swearing to bear arms for the United States if called upon to do so, he was required to recite the words: "I further renounce the title of nobility which I have heretofore belonged."
Hopkins, 62, arrived at the courthouse accompanied by his mother and his girlfriend, Francine Kay. Several showbusiness friends turned up as witnesses, including the director Steven Spielberg, and his wife, Kate Capshaw, as well as the movie producer Paula Wagner. Hopkins' US spokeswoman, Catherine Olim, said: "He has been here a long time and it seems like the right thing to do. Anthony is very happy about the citizenship. However I have no comment to make about the knighthood."
Hopkins grew up in the area of Port Talbot called Tai Bach - Welsh for "little houses".Daniel Davies, 59, a local factory worker, said the actor had become "too big for his boots". He added: "It is disgraceful that he should forget his Welsh roots." The Tai Bach postmaster, Asghar Ali, 45, said: "Some people in this village are fighting for survival and hoped for some support from Sir Anthony. He is always harping on about his Welshness but when the chips are down he decides to go away."
film Sex scene trailer sees a shirtless Jamie Dornan turn up the heat
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 2 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Game of Thrones season 5 trailer: The first full-length look is here
- 5 Rashida Jones speaks out against male-centric porn saying 'women should have sex and feel good about it'
Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
Game of Thrones really doesn't want Danny Dyer - EastEnders star rejected three times
Game of Thrones season 5 trailer: The first full-length look is here
Sia apologises for 'Elastic Heart' music video that sees Shia LaBeouf wrestle 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler
25 years of Disney: How Darth Vader, Iron Man, Elsa and Pixar's geniuses helped the company conquer the world (again)
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
King Abdullah dead: We can't afford not to hold Saudi Arabia's royals to account