Actor Robert De Niro won a standing ovation at Sunday night's Tony awards in New York for criticising US president Donald Trump. Appearing on stage at New York's Radio City Music Hall, De Niro declared: "I'm gonna say one thing. F**k Trump."
As the applauding audience rose to their feet, De Niro continued: "It's no longer down with Trump. It's f**k Trump." He then continued with an apparently pre-prepared introduction of Bruce Springsteen.
Although the show was broadcast as-live, CBS had time to bleep out the f-word for TV audiences, thought to number around six million.
De Niro has long been a vociferous critic of Mr Trump. After calling him “totally nuts” in August 2016, the actor released a video during the election campaign stating his desire to punch Mr Trump in the face, and calling him “an idiot, a national disaster, an embarrassment to this country – this fool, this bozo.”
Following Mr Trump's election, De Niro told Jimmy Kimmel he would try to remain circumspect and supportive of the office of the presidency. "I just have to see what he's going to do and how he's going to follow through on certain things," he said.
However, Mr Trump's tenure does not appear to have impressed De Niro. In May 2017, he criticised the president's immigration policy at a Lincoln Center gala, and just over a year ago, he hit out again in a speech at Brown University, calling America under the current administration a "tragic, dumbass comedy" and urging students to "work for the change. Work to stop the insanity."
Last month, it was reported that De Niro had banned the president from his Nobu chain of restaurants. However, this was later denied by a representative for the actor and disputed by co-owner Nobuyuki “Nobu” Matsuhisa, who said, “It’s my dream for Trump to sit next to Bob. To make them sushi!”
Musical The Band's Visit was the major winner at the Tony's, picking up 10 awards. The Broadway transfer of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child took seven awards, including best play, while Glenda Jackson won best actress in a play for her role in Three Tall Women and Andrew Garfield was named best actor in a play for his role in Angels in America. – Guardian