'Pathetic' Depardieu Quits France in Tax Rage

Trades barbs with PM, turns in passport after he moved to Belgium

By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 16, 2012 8:06 AM CST

(Newser) – For those American liberals who threaten to move to France should a presidential election not go their way, Gerard Depardieu is noisily heading in the opposite direction and burning his bridges as he goes: The actor is publicly surrendering his French passport and lambasting socialist PM Jean-Marc Ayrault, who had harsh words of his own after Depardieu moved to Belgium to avoid France's heavy taxes on millionaires. After Ayrault called Depardieu "pathetic" and "unpatriotic," Depardieu fired back in an open letter published today in Le Journal du Dimanche, reports the AP. "I leave after paying 85% of my revenue in 2012," Depardieu writes. "I turn into you my passport and social security card, which I have never used." Here's one reason France might not be entirely sorry to see him go.

French actor Gerard Depardieu poses as his arrives in Paris, Wednesday, April 14, 2010.   (AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)
French actor Gerard Depardieu poses at a photo-call of the film 'Mammuth' in Berlin, Germany, in this file photo dated Friday, Feb. 19, 2010.   (AP Photo/Kai-Uwe Knoth, File)
In this Sept 12, 2010 file picture, French actor Gerard Depardieu tests a glass of wine during a gastronomy fair in Duesseldorf, Germany.   (AP Photo/ Roberto Pfeil/dapd, File)
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