Sean Penn Issues an Oscar Threat

He pledges to 'smelt' his awards if Ukraine's Zelensky is not allowed an appearance
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 27, 2022 7:34 AM CDT
Sean Penn Issues an Oscar Threat
Sean Penn in a file photo.   (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)

(Newser) – The Oscars are awarded Sunday night, and rumors are flying that Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky might make an appearance via video. The New York Post reports that no decision has been made as Academy officials debate the idea. However, Oscar winner Sean Penn—a fierce critic of Russia's invasion—addressed the issue on CNN Saturday night and pressured the Academy. “Now, it is my understanding that a decision has been made not to do it," he said. If so, that "will have been the most obscene moment in all of Hollywood history."

Penn urged people to boycott the ceremony if Zelensky is not given time, and he promised that when he returned to the US, he would "smelt" his Oscars in public. The actor is currently in Poland with his nonprofit CORE providing humanitarian relief for Ukrainians. He has twice won Oscars for best actor (Mystic River and Milk). The possibility of a Zelensky appearance surfaced when co-host Amy Schumer revealed this week that she had pitched the idea to the powers that be, notes the Hollywood Reporter. "I am not afraid to go there, but it’s not me producing the Oscars," she told Drew Barrymore. (Read more Oscars stories.)

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