Robert De Niro expressed his anger on stage at the 33rd Gotham Awards on Monday after anti-Donald Trump comments he’d prepared to say during a speech about his latest film, the Martin Scorsese-directed “Killers of the Flower Moon,” were cut from the teleprompter without his knowledge.
After finishing his prepared remarks as they’d been inputted on the teleprompter, De Niro told the audience: “I just want to say one thing. The beginning of my speech was edited cut out, and I didn’t know about it. And I want to read it.”
He then picked up his phone and read what had been removed from the address.
Watch the video here:
“History isn’t history anymore. Truth isn’t truth, and even facts are being replaced by alternative facts and driven by conspiracy theories and ugliness,” De Niro began.
“In Florida, young students are taught that slaves developed skills which could be applied for their personal benefit,” he continued. “The entertainment industry isn’t immune to this festering disease. The Duke, John Wayne, famously said of Native Americans, ’I don’t feel we did wrong in taking this great country away from them. There were great numbers of people who needed new land, and the Indians were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves.”
De Niro then turned his attention to former president and current Republican 2024 front-runner Donald Trump, whom he has scathingly called out on multiplepreviousoccasions.
“Lying has become just another tool in the charlatan’s arsenal. The former president lied to us more than 30,000 times during his four years in office, and he’s keeping up the pace in his current campaign of retribution,” said De Niro. “But with all of his lies, he can’t hide his soul. He attacks the weak, destroys the gifts of nature and shows his disrespect for example, by using ‘Pocahontas’ as a slur.”
De Niro said that was the end of the edited-out part.
“This is where I came in, and I saw that they edited all that,” he told the audience. “So, I’m gonna say these things but to Apple and thank them and all that, Gotham, blah, blah, blah, Apple. But I don’t feel like thanking them at all for what they did. How dare they do that, actually?” he added.
Neither Apple nor The Gotham Film & Media Institute have commented on De Niro’s criticism.