British actress Tilda Swinton has donated over £1000 ($1603) to the funeral of Russian gay rights activist Alexey Davydov.
The actress, a prominent supporter of gay rights, sent the donation to help cover the cost of Davydov’s funeral.
The organisers needed to raise over $2000 (£1247) to cover the cost of the funeral, which they have now surpassed.
Nikolai Alekseev, one of the organisers of Moscow Pride, confirmed they had received the donation from Swinton.
He said: ‘donation from Mrs. Swinton came at the expense of GayRussia Fund in Switzerland. They will be transferred to the organisers of the funeral’
Showing his gratitude for the donation, Alekseev said: ‘Bravo, Tilda!!! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! Tilda Swinton donated 1000 GBP for the funeral of Russian gay activist Alexey Davydov. YOU ARE JUST AMAZING! I am sure Alexey would be flattered to know this.
‘This is a very generous gesture on her part, for which we are very grateful.’
Alekseev also thanked Gay Star News for helping spread the message.
He said: ‘THANKS to GAYSTARNEWS for raising awareness about all this situation! You are all amazing! As of now only in PayPal we managed to collect almost 3000 USD in almost a day!’
Gay Star News editor Tris Reid-Smith was glad to play a part in raising the funds.
He said: ‘Alexey was a hero and now he will have a fitting funeral. I am pleased we were able to help in our small way but all the credit belongs to the generous donors and Alexey’s brave activist friends.’
The funeral of Davydov, who died last week following a prolonged illness at the age of 36, will be held on Monday (30 September).
On a visit to Moscow in July, Swinton posed for a photograph holding a rainbow flag, and issued a statement: ‘In solidarity. From Russia with love.’
The show of defiance inspired Davydov and fellow Russian LGBT activists to put up a rainbow banner in Red Square a few days later, which said: ‘Homophobia – the religion of rednecks.’