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Should The Oscars Ban Sacha Baron Cohen From Attending The, Er, Oscars? You Decide!

By Rob Payne | Lists | February 24, 2012 |

By Rob Payne | Lists | February 24, 2012 |

If you haven’t heard by now, Sacha Baron Cohen was in the Oscar nominated film Hugo and as such has an invitation to attend the awards ceremony this Sunday. Earlier this week, THR reported that the former Borat wanted to show up in the guise of his latest character, Admiral General Aladeen. Naturally, not wanting to condone any planned chicanery, the Academy of Motion Pictures of Arts & Sciences declared that if Cohen decided to continue this endeavor, he would be banned from attending. The “Admiral General’s” website then updated by issuing a statement that he would “deliver a formal response tomorrow morning to being banned from the Oscars by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Zionists.”

Sacha Baron Cohen also has a new movie coming out pretty soon. The Dictator looks to have an actual narrative, in lieu of Cohen’s standard mockumentary format, but, like TK, I’m not convinced that’s a positive development or just a retreat from the disaster of Bruno. But despite that change in comedic style, I get why the actor would want to continue his tradition of always being in character while one of his movies is being promoted. That’s been his whole schtick since “Da Ali G Show,” when he cornered unsuspecting tight-assed politicians with his extremely “urban” title character. He controls the chaos better than he becomes the characters. But I’m not always sure if it’s funny.

Here’s that official response from Admiral General Aladeen, concerning his banishment:

I get why the Academy would want to limit blatant promotion of a new movie that has nothing to do with this year’s event. As much as we might enjoy the situations in Question 10 on C. Rob’s Oscar Quiz, the producers of these telecasts hate anything that unscripted. Lest they face some kind of absurd fine from the FCC. Of course, that also makes them look like the tightest of the tight-assed politicians, which gives him an actual platform to stand on. That’s got to be better promotion for The Dictator than any red carpet cleverness Cohen had planned. See? We’re talking about it here!

But, again, I’m not always sure if that is, how you say, funny. To help me, and anybody else torn out there, I’ve compiled eight examples of Sacha being Sacha — which is to say, Sacha being Borat or Burno — out in the wild. Enjoy?

At the 2006 Toronto International Film Festival premiere of Borat

At the Q&A following said TIFF movie premiere

At the MTV Movie Awards in Madrid

At the Borat premiere in Amsterdam

At the London premiere of same…

And at the London premiere of Bruno

Being interviewed by the National Lampoon (with a very unfortunate title)

Finally, inevitably, on Fox News when it still had Hannity and Colmes

I’m still undecided, but I assure you that we here at Pajiba will do our best to bring you updates as this important story develops. In the meantime, here’s a classic with Ali G that I know is hilarious, and perhaps even more now in retrospect. Be in awe of how deeply Newt Gingrich can seethe:

Rob Payne also writes the indie comic The Unstoppable Force, tweets on the Twitter @RobOfWar, and his ware can be purchased here (if you’re into that sort of thing). He’s pretty sure he’ll be skipping The Dictator no matter happens.

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