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Robert De Niro says his speech was censored at Gotham Awards — so he read it anyway: 'How dare they'

Robert De Niro says his speech was censored at Gotham Awards — so he read it anyway: 'How dare they'

"I don’t really feel like thanking them at all for what they did," the venerated actor said after reading the edited parts of his speech.

Robert De Niro may be an actor, but unless you're a screenwriter, you probably don't want to put words into his mouth. Or take them out of his mouth, for that matter.

At the Gotham Awards tonight, De Niro was accepting the Gotham Historical Icon and Creator Tribute award on behalf of Killers of the Flower Moon, when he noticed a sizable chunk of his speech had been omitted from the teleprompter. That's when he went back and read his original speech off of his phone.

“I just want to say one thing,” De Niro said. “The beginning of my speech was edited, cut out, and I didn’t know about it. And I want to read it."

He continued, "History isn’t history anymore. Truth is not truth. Even facts are being replaced by alternative facts and driven by conspiracy theories and ugliness. In Florida, young students are taught that slaves were taught skills that could be applied for their personal benefit."

De Niro went on to reference a quote from John Wayne about "taking this great country away from" Native Americans and rebuking former President Trump for lying "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."

Noting after that was where his speech on the prompter kicked in, De Niro expressed his anger at being censored.

“So I’m going to say these things but to Apple and thank them and all that,” De Niro said. “Gotham, blah blah blah, but I don’t really feel like thanking them at all for what they did. How dare they do that, actually. But now I will go to accepting the award."

Apple and the Gotham Awards did not immediately respond to EW's request for comment.

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