Sean Penn in Ukraine to film documentary about war

Oscar-winner has been involved in numerous international humanitarian and anti-war efforts over the years

Actor and director Sean Penn attends a press briefing at the Office of the President in Kiev, Ukraine. Ukrainian Presidential Press Service via Reuters
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Actor and filmmaker Sean Penn has travelled to Ukraine to continue work on a documentary about the Russian incursion.

Ukraine's Office of the President wrote on Facebook on Thursday that Penn had attended press briefings, met with Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk and spoken to journalists and military personnel about the war.

“Sean Penn demonstrates the courage that many others, especially western politicians lack,” the Facebook post said.

“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.”

He was also in the country in late November to work on the project, which is being produced by Vice Studios. Photographs at the time showed him visiting the front lines of the Ukrainian Armed Forces near the Donetsk region.

The Oscar-winner has been involved in numerous international humanitarian and anti-war efforts over the years and founded the non-profit disaster relief organisation CORE in response to the 2010 earthquakes in Haiti, chronicled in the documentary Citizen Penn.

Actor and director Sean Penn attends a press briefing at the Office of the President in Kiev, Ukraine. Ukrainian Presidential Press Service via Reuters

Penn's arrival contrasts with the thousands of Ukrainians attempting to leave the country or reach safety as the Russian military continues to advance.

After months of ordering tens of thousands of troops to the border with Ukraine and subsequent attempts by western countries to talk him back, Russian President Vladimir Putin gave the green light for an invasion, giving as his reason security concerns over Ukraine possibly joining Nato.

The Ukrainian government has reported that more than 100 civilians and military personnel have been killed in the fighting so far.

Agencies contributed to this report

Updated: February 25, 2022, 8:08 PM
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