Steven Seagal officially became a Russian citizen earlier in November, cementing the bromance between the action star and Russian President Vladimir Putin that has been budding over the years. Seagal called Putin, “one of the greatest world leaders if not the greatest world leader alive today” during a 2013 interview with RT, a slice of gratitude that Putin repaid on Friday.
Seagal and Putin met for a special event Friday that saw Seagal receive his Russian passport, one of the perks of being a dual Russian citizen. Putin made sure to heap praise on Seagal and hoped it would help “normalize” relations with the United States according to The Washington Post:
“I want to congratulate you and express the hope that this is another, albeit small, gesture and it might be a sign of the gradual normalization of relations between our countries,” Putin told Seagal, according to Reuters. (“Spasibo Bolshoye,” or “thank you very much,” the star of “Under Siege” and “Exit Wounds” replied.) The Kremlin first announced it had granted Seagal citizenship earlier this month.
Seagal’s grandmother is from Vladivostok in eastern Russia according to The Washington Post, opening the doors for the bromance to come to fruition. Putin has even hinted that Seagal may become a consul to “improve relations,” meaning the honors might not be over. He joins Gerard Depardieu and boxer Roy Jones Jr. as Russian citizens, in 2013 and 2015 respectively.
On top of the passport, Seagal even completed his own Russian version of the Mannequin Challenge. This either means the meme is dead, as it probably should be, or it’s reached new heights of life and will continue on with Russian strength that cannot be broken.
(Via The Washington Post)