Tax rates? It was the meat that made me move to Belgium, says Gerard Depardieu
When the French actor Gérard Depardieu packed his bags and headed over the border to set up home in Belgium last year, everyone assumed he was trying to escape a new 75 per cent wealth tax introduced by President François Hollande.
But the star of Cyrano de Bergerac has told a Belgian television station it was the quality of meat at the local butcher, among other attractions, that lured him to the village of Néchin, just a stone’s throw from France.
“They say I moved here for tax reasons – that is not quite true,” Depardieu told Notélé TV, before going on to list what he loved about Néchin (including being friends with the mayor and the local charcuterie). His ambition? “I want to have a restaurant, as I like to eat. Aged meat, very tender.”
For good bread, however, he said he would have to nip over the border. And Belgian bakers were not the only people he took a swipe at.
“I feel that the [French] government does not do its job. It is his [Mr Hollande’s] first time, he has never held a ministerial post before,” Depardieu said, adding: “I think the French are fed up.”
In the interview from his well-stocked kitchen, Depardieu sported a padded gilet emblazoned with the logo of Russia, a double-headed eagle. Since his flight from his homeland, the actor has accepted Russian citizenship and also spent time in Chechnya as the guest of its President, Ramzan Kadyrov.
Mr Kadyrov has been accused of personal involvement in torture and human-rights abuses – allegations he denies. And Depardieu seemed to agree, insisting: “He is not a dictator… he defends himself, that’s all.”
interviewThe producer and activist, Trudie Styler, whose film 'Filth' is up for five film awards, is tapping into the industry's neglected female talent
interviewHer estate has become the nation's glossiest food empire
theatreTheatre's hitmaker Daniel Evans on 'Oliver' and bringing 'The Full Monty' to the stage
food + drinkMichelin-starred Tom Sellers on being this year's hottest property
tvParents (and kids) rejoice! A new wave of fantastic family entertainment is here
booksGeese, gorillas, grandads... and growing up
food + drinkHow one grocery e-tailer is gearing up for the Yuletide rush
food + drink
travelFor broadcaster Mishal Husain, a long-haul Club Med holiday was a chance for her family to explore its sense of 'zen' and 'animation'
Hundreds arrested as Canadian police smash worldwide paedophile ring
Nelson Mandela: 11 inspirational quotes to live your life by
Ja Rule forced to deny leaving wife for prison cell mate
The 'terrorist' and the Tories: What did Nelson Mandela really think of Margaret Thatcher?
Crash pilot who threatened Ukip leader Nigel Farage found dead
- 1 Hundreds arrested as Canadian police smash worldwide paedophile ring
- 2 Sherlock series 3: Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman provide teasers for the biggest comeback in British television
- 3 David Duke: Former Ku Klux Klan leader expelled from Italy
- 4 Why Barcelona chose Everton to educate their latest prodigy
- 5 Japan cracks down on leaks after scandal of Fukushima nuclear power plant
- < Previous
- Next >
£50000 - £70000 per annum: Harrington Starr: C#.NET Developer (WPF, WinForms, ...
£30000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Harrington Starr: C# .NET Server Side De...
£50000 - £60000 per annum + Benefits: Harrington Starr: C# ASP.NET Developer (...
£60000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits: Harrington Starr: Senior C# WPF .NET Dev...