Gerard Depardieu, newly accepted citizen of Russia, plans to open a restaurant in his adopted homeland.
The French actor — who left his native country after very public war of words with the French government over their plans to impose a 75 percent super tax on residents earning over million Euros a year — also received registration papers for his new flat in Saransk.
The Cyrano de Bergerac star’s flat is in a newly built apartment block in the center of Saransk, the capital of the Republic of Mordovia which is about 400 miles from Moscow.
His exact address is Number 1, Democracy Street, which the actor described as “symbolic.”
Depardieu, who was given his flat by Russian actor Nikolai Borodachyov, says he plans to build a small house in the countryside and open a restaurant in the city.
“Glory to Russia; glory to Mordovia! This region doesn’t have oil or gas but has rich people who make their wishes come true in life,” the actor reportedly said after a welcoming ceremony on Saturday, according to The Guardian.
During what is now his second trip to Mordovia, Depardieu was accompanied by the culture minister Vladimir Medinsky on a tour of the Bolshoi theatre in Moscow on Friday. He will spend four days in Saransk and visit a variety of food processing facilities, a fashion collection, and a monastery.
Once described by Marguerite Duras, who directed him in two of his films, as a “big, beautiful, runaway truck of a man,” Depardieu is known to love food and owns several vineyards and restaurants including La Fontaine Gaillon in Paris, BBC News notes.
UPI.com reports Depardieu, 64, also toured a cheese factory where he selected cheese that will be used in his restaurant.
“This will be special cheese. Depardieu has requirements for the design and packing,” Valery Maresyev, the press and information minister of Russia’s Mordovia republic, told reporters.
On Sunday, Depardieu toured a local poultry farm and an agricultural complex and was reportedly “pleased” with the quality of the products as compared to European ones, Maresyev added.
Elaborating, the actor revealed plans to open an inexpensive restaurant where “working people will go to snack.”
Depardieu was personally presented with a Russian passport by President Vladimir Putin in the Black Sea resort of Sochi in a highly publicized visit in January.
The larger than life actor has repeatedly denied his Russian citizenship is merely a super tax evasion stunt and says he plans to spend significant amounts of time in his new homeland.