Ben Stiller and Sean Penn join Morgan Freeman on permanent Russia ban list
Ben Stiller and Sean Penn have been permanently banned from entering Russia due to their outspoken support of Ukraine in the midst of the conflict between the two countries.
The news that the two actors have been banned comes a few months after two other major Hollywood celebrties - Morgan Freeman and Rob Reiner - were also prohibited from entering Russia.
In 2017, Freeman narrated a Public Service Announcement calling for Russia to be investigated for its part in the 2016 election which saw Donald Trump defeat Hilary Clinton in the polls.
Stiller, meanwhile, is an ambassador for the UN refugee agency and said upon meeting Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy:
"Sir, really nice to meet you. Thanks for taking the time. You’re my hero. I'm inspired for what you've done in this country and for the world."
On the visit to Ukraine, Stiller posted a story to his Instagram page, saying: “Hey, I’m Ben Stiller, and I’m here in Ukraine. I’m meeting people who’ve been impacted by the war and hearing how it’s changed their lives. War and violence are devastating people all over the world. Nobody chooses to flee their home. Seeking safety is a right and it needs to be upheld for every person.”
Sean Penn banned from Russia
Penn was forced to flee Ukraine after being in the country to film a VICE documentary about Russia's invasion.
The Oscar-winning actor revealed that he even considered joining the fight against Russia and Vladimir Putin.
“My intention is to go back into Ukraine. But I’m not an idiot, I am not certain what I can offer,” Penn told Hollywood Authentic.
“The only possible reason for me staying in Ukraine longer last time would’ve been for me to be holding a rifle.”
Penn and Stiller joined several high-profile Americans on the banned list which was released on Monday.