Sean Penn has given his Academy Award to Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy
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Featured Image Credit: Anton Gerashchenko/Twitter
Sean Penn has gifted his coveted Academy Award to Ukraine's President.
The actor caught up with Volodymyr Zelenskyy in the besieged country and the video of their meeting looked heartwarming and sincere.
Penn pulled his Oscar out of a bag and graciously placed it on the table before telling him it was a 'symbolic, silly thing'.
He's won two Academy Awards for acting for his roles in Mystic River and the biopic Milk, and it's unclear which award he was handing over.
Sean said: "If I know this is here with you, then I'll feel better and stronger for the fight."
The 62-year-old said it would bring him peace knowing a part of him was being held in Ukraine.
Zelenskyy was told to bring the shiny, gold award back to Penn 'when he wins the war'.
But it wasn't a one-way exchange, as President Zelenskyy had a gift for Sean.
The Academy Award winner was presented with a medal in a classy little case and the two stood side-by-side to pose for photos.
A video shared by advisor to the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, Anton Gerashchenko, shows the President and actor strolling through the streets of Ukraine.
Officials then showed Penn a plaque in the floor that bears the actor's name and signature to show him how appreciative they are of his activism.
Penn is in Ukraine making a documentary about the conflict with Russia as he wants to highlight the everyday atrocities that have been happening since the war began in February.
He has also been involved in regular discussions with Zelenskyy and the Ukrainian government.
The government office wrote in a statement: “Sean Penn demonstrates the courage that many others, especially western politicians lack.
“The director specially came to Kiev to record all the events that are currently happening in Ukraine and to tell the world the truth about Russia’s invasion of our country.”
Penn was also very insistent on Zelenskyy speaking at this year's Academy Awards and he threatened to destroy his Oscar if he wasn't included in the ceremony.
Speaking to CNN ahead of the event, Penn said: "There is nothing greater that the Academy Awards could do than to give him that opportunity to talk to all of us."
He added: "When I return [from Ukraine], I will smelt [my Oscar] in public. I pray that’s not what happens."
Zelenskyy didn't end up speaking at the glitzy ceremony and it's unclear whether Penn followed through with his threat or whether this is the next best thing.
Topics: News, Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky