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"The sappy music makes it even worse": Sean Penn Oscar wins explored as actor loans one to Volodymyr Zelenskyy in viral video

Sean Penn has earlier referred to Zelenskyy as a great friend. (Image via Cindy Ord/Getty)
Sean Penn has earlier referred to Zelenskyy as a great friend. (Image via Cindy Ord/Getty)

American actor Sean Penn sparked debates online after he gave his Oscar award to Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

As per a video posted on Zelenskyy's Telegram channel, the 62-year-old star loaned his prestigious win to the President during one of his visits to the country's capital, while asking him to bring it back to Malibu after the Russia-Ukraine conflict was over.

Sean Penn went back to Kiev to give his Oscar to Zelensky "until victory" (which means never). Cringe factor = off the charts. The sappy music makes it even worse. 🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮🤮 https://t.co/4bCRyjGkqm

Sean Penn, who happens to be one of the most versatile actors in Hollywood, won two Academy Awards in the Best Actor category for Mystic River in 2003 and Milk in 2008.

Aside from his wins, Penn has been nominated three times in the same category, for Dead Man Walking in 1995, Sweet and Lowdown in 1999, and I Am Sam in 2001.

The 62-year-old actor, who has been an active vocal supporter of Ukraine in the ongoing conflict, fled the country in March this year while shooting a documentary about it.


Twitter reacts on Sean Penn's Oscar handout to Volodymyr Zelenskyy

After the video of Penn loaning one of his Oscars to Zelenskyy went viral, a debate sparked between several Twitter users as they were divided on the "motive" behind the actor's actions.

Some slammed The Gunman star for "making everything about himself" and giving away his award just to garner attention. Not only Sean Penn, but even the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, was bashed online for "acting non-stop since February," with one user questioning his schedule as he was out meeting celebrities.

@Navsteva Can't understand Penn's motive at all. Is he scouting for a cinema opportunity, or something like that, wants to make a feature film 'How Zel Saved The World' etc blah blah blah?
@ClownWorld_ The cringe level is through the roof
@Navsteva He deserves an Oscar, because recently he acted very well under the camera and the hollywood crew, there is no actor in the world who receives tens of billions of dollars in salary like him. But as an actor, you always have to give up your role to return to reality
@Navsteva Who is Sean Penn? a Quaker?
@ClownWorld_ They are making the world a reality show. You can’t convince me otherwise.
@ClownWorld_ From one actor to another.
@Navsteva That's making me vomit.
Leave it to Sean Penn to find some way to make every war about himself. twitter.com/clownworld_/st…
Actor Sean Penn hands over his Oscar to Zelensky and says he can keep it 'until Ukraine's Victory''When you win, bring it back to Malibu'Top Trolling…You really couldn’t make this up! 😂🤣 🤡 🤡 https://t.co/OBROnblb91
@ClownWorld_ I mean Zelensky's performance is worthy of an Oscar
@ClownWorld_ Well, he did deserve it. He's been acting non-stop since February.
@ClownWorld_ I mean. This is the worst thing I’ve ever seen. It’s so embarrassing. 🤦‍♀️. BTW… how does Zelinsky have so much time to meet with celebrities?? Thought he was on the front lines??
@Navsteva He's giving Zelenskyy the best actor award https://t.co/dZUW7Uinmo

However, some users praised Sean Penn's actions, with one even calling him a "true friend" of the war-inflicted country.

Sean Penn has given his Oscar to Ukraine - @ZelenskyyUa Thank you, sir!It is an honor for us. https://t.co/vx2UfEVTds
Our true friend Sean Penn came to Kyiv. I thanked him for the lasting support of 🇺🇦 in the fight against RF.Sean brought his Oscar statuette and gave it to @ZelenskyyUa as a symbol of faith in Ukraine's victory. We visited the Alley of Courage in Kyiv Constitution Square. https://t.co/sMjKQUUoKa
This is the best of American creative talent helping Ukraine. Sean Penn and @CoreResponse have been with Ukraine since the start of this conflict. And they’ll make sure we all stand with Ukraine until it’s over. #SlavaUkraïni twitter.com/gerashchenko_e…
I really respect this act from Sean Penn. Maybe some won’t. But I see as great respect and emotion. “Hold this until Ukraine is free.” Clearly it means a lot to Sean and I can see it as him giving something important to him. #SlavaUkraini twitter.com/gerashchenko_e…

What exactly did Sean Penn say to Volodymyr Zelenskyy during his visit to Ukraine?

Marking his third trip to Ukraine this year, Sean Penn was visiting Kyiv to meet President Zelenskyy, whom he earlier referred to as a "great friend."

In the viral video, the Flag Day star can be seen drawing out one of his Academy Awards from a bag placed on the president's desk while saying:

"This is for you. It's just a symbolic silly thing, but if I know this is here with you then I'll feel better and stronger for the fight. When you win, bring it back to Malibu. I'll feel much better knowing a piece of me is here."

Zelenskyy gratefully accepted the award and looked flattered, and described the gesture as a "great honor."

In turn, the Ukrainian president bestowed Penn with an Order of Merit of the III degree and thanked him for his "significant contribution" to the crisis effort.

Previously, the Daily Mail reported that Penn also spoke kind words for Zelenskyy earlier this year, saying:

"Part of what makes [Zelensky] so particularly extraordinary is that courage, he's the face of so many Ukrainians. I mean this is leadership we aspire to, this is freedom of thought and true leadership that mostly is just so moving."

According to the Independent, Penn's name was put on a rock on Ukraine's Walk of the Brave, which is meant for “brave people who have stood with Ukraine from the very beginning.”

Additionally, his name will also be listed among many other personalities who have stood with the country during the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict.

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Edited by Abhipsa Choudhury
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