Even despite Russia’s invasion of Ukraine coming closer to Kyiv, the embattled nation’s capital, Sean Penn is there filming a documentary, garnering support and admiration from Ukraine’s government in the process.
The Office of the President of Ukraine announced Thursday that Penn arrived to document the invasion; according to Newsweek, it’s the second time in three months Penn has been in Ukraine to create a documentary.
The article noted that deputy prime minister Iryna Vereshchuk, Ukrainian military members, and journalists within the embattled country are among Penn’s interview subjects as he seeks to capture Russian aggression in a film.
“The director specially came to Kyiv 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,” according to a Ukrainian government statement, “Sean Penn is among those who support Ukraine in Ukraine today. Our country is grateful to him for such a show of courage and honesty.”
The statement went on to pointedly contrast the actor to other public figures, noting, “Sean Penn is demonstrating bravery that many others have been lacking, in particular some Western politicians. The more people like that — true friends of Ukraine, who support the fight for freedom.”
The Daily Mail, which noted that Penn’s documentary “is a VICE Studios production, ‘in association with VICE World News and Endeavor Content,'” reports that Penn is planning on staying in Kyiv even as Ukraine is mobilizing its military and preparing for battle, and even as citizens are fleeing the country to find peace.