VETERAN US director Robert Altman has joined Syriana director Stephen Gaghan by wading in with his own Bush-bashing tuppence worth.
Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme this morning(Feb 24) and just two days after Gaghan said US President George Bush had ordered the assasination of “lots and lots of people”, Altman said of Americans that “the whole world does not like us”.
He added: “I was always considered very welcome at different places in the world then suddenly it became this ‘American thing’, and it still is, right now, today.
“This will endure certainly until (after) this current mess that Mr Bush has gotten us into . . . it’s painful.”
Altman – whose directorial hits include M*A*S*H, Short Cuts and Gosford Park – is currently in London to direct the London premier of Arthur Miller’s Resurrection Blues. The play is Canadian ex-Scream star Neve Campbell’s theatrical debut.
In the BBC morning interview, Altman – just turned 81 – revealed he received hand-delivered threats over previous “anti-patriotic” comments despite remaining one of the film industry’s most respected directors.
Altman – who has been named alongside George Clooney, Cameron Diaz and Sharon Stone in a long list of Hollywood “traitors” – said: “I was in England doing Gosford Park when 9/11 happened.
“I got back for the Oscars or one of those things and I was asked how do I feel coming back and seeing the American flag, and I said it makes me sick.
“And boy, that hit the papers, saying I was a traitor. People left hand-delivered notes at my door, threatening, and saying I was un-American and that I was a traitor and blah, blah, blah.”
Altman – who is up for an Honorary Oscar for his massive body of film work – added: “I thought Oh, boy, if we’ve come to this point, this is really where I don’t want to be. The politics are really wrong (in America).”