Filmmaker Oliver Stone, who is well-known for taking contrarian stands both onscreen and off, has criticised “Putin’s aggression in Ukraine” after previously saying there was “no proof” Russia intended to invade.
Stone went to Russia and interviewed its president for a documentary called ‘The Putin Interviews’, which aired on Showtime in 2017. Now, with Putin and Russia driving the 24-hour news cycle, the director has been offering his perspective on his Facebook page and in interviews, reports deadline.com.
Early last month, Stone told KCRW’s Robert Scheer: “The U.S. and its allies in NATO have been provoking Russia for, since two years now — actually three years – over the Ukraine.”
In the same interview, the director decried “bloodthirsty” media coverage saying, “they have no proof that Russia intends to invade Ukraine; I doubt that they would. I think Russia is concerned only with the Donbass region.”
After the invasion, Stone, who had also criticised the media for using the term “invasion” to characterise Russia’s plans, came around.
“Although the U.S. has many wars of aggression on its conscience, it doesn’t justify Putin’s aggression in Ukraine. A dozen wrongs don’t make a right. Russia was wrong to invade.”
Stone, who served in the Vietnam War, has long made films critical of U.S. politicians (W., JFK and Nixon) the media (Natural Born Killers, Talk Radio) and American intervention abroad (Platoon, Born on the Fourth of July).
He’s also made a string of documentaries featuring controversial world leaders such as Putin, Fidel Castro and Lula da Silva.
Taking a plot point from one of his more popular films, Stone contended: “Now is the time, as JFK and Khrushchev faced down the perilous situation in Cuba in October 1962, for the two nuclear powers to walk this back from the abyss.”