Actress Sigourney Weaver said Tuesday that Russian President Vladimir Putin's anti-gay campaign was turning him into “a real dictator.”

Weaver made her remarks during a New York City panel to discuss the impact of the 2009 film Prayers for Bobby, in which she plays Mary Griffith, a real-life mother whose homophobia drove her son to suicide.

When asked to weigh in on the current situation in Russia, where a law prohibiting “gay propaganda” has provoked calls for a boycott of the Sochi Olympics, Weaver answered that Putin was “becoming a real dictator.”

“I'm incredibly surprised by the way that Putin is digging in and becoming a real dictator,” Weaver is quoted as saying by gay glossy The Advocate. “He was a sort of secret dictator and now, with everything's he's done, it's radical, it's such a frightening time. It's happening right in front of us. It's hard for me to believe that there's nothing the world can't do to save those girls [Pussy Riot] and young people. It's crazy for have someone say: 'You can't be you in this country.' I think it's very hard to say to these young people who've trained so hard that we should boycott the Olympics. But I think it's an excellent opportunity to make it clear how the world thinks about this. I think the Olympics may be a great way for some, without trying to be shocking, but trying to be exuberant and show the world what it means to be gay: How can you resist that?”