Christopher Walken painted over one of Banksy's trademark rats as part of a storyline for the TV drama "The Outlaws."
The artist, whose paintings sell for millions and whose artwork often appears suddenly in unassuming places, created the graffiti rat for the show in his hometown in Bristol, England, according to The Washington Post.
In the show, Walken plays one of a group of minor criminals who are doing community service and refurbishing a building. In one scene, Walken's character comes across the rat with Banksy's name above it. He asks his supervisor whether or not to paint over it. The probation officer, who is looking the other way, tells him all graffiti must be covered, so he does so.
A spokesperson for the show confirmed to the BBC that Walken's character had really painted over the authentic Banksy painting.
"We can confirm that the artwork at the end of 'The Outlaws' was an original Banksy, and that Christopher Walken painted over that artwork during the filming of this scene, ultimately destroying it," the spokesperson said.
Over the past three decades, Banksy, who fiercely protects his anonymity, has become an incredibly successful and famous artist. Last month one of his pieces, "Love is in the Bin," sold for $25.4 million at auction, according to The Washington Post. Another one of his paintings, "Girl With Balloon," sold for $1.4 million three years earlier while a piece of his wall art was sold for a "six-figure sum" in February, according to the BBC.
Zoe Papadakis is a Newsmax writer based in South Africa with two decades of experience specializing in media and entertainment. She has been in the news industry as a reporter, writer and editor for newspapers, magazine and websites.
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