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Friday, July 15, 2005

I smell a Borat...Ali G star dupes US TV station

Ali G creator Sacha Baron Cohen duped an American TV station into interviewing his bogus Kazakhstani journalist Borat live on air yesterday.

Despite his increasing profile in the States, with an HBO series already under his belt, Cohen managed to talk his way onto the morning news show on WAPT-Channel 16 in Mississippi.

He was interviewed for several minutes about a documentary he had supposedly filmed about America for his homeland.

‘We were gotten,’ WAPT's general manager Stuart Kellogg admitted to the local Clarion-Ledger newspaper.

‘It got out of hand. [Anchorman Brad McMullan] handled it extremely well. But it was tough to shut Cohen up.’

As he was escorted out of the studio, Cohen wandered in front of the camera during a live weather report.

‘It seemed plausible that he was who he said he was,’ Kellogg said. ‘Who knows what an accent from Kazakhstan sounds like?

‘Our folks researched the production company, which has its own web site and sounds legitimate. They did their homework, but not well enough.’

But a Google search for Borat Sagdiyev immediately throws up pages of references linking him to Da Ali G Show.

The station has promised to beef up security and its vetting procedure for guests following Cohen’s appearance.

Cohen has previously spoofed the likes of Vice President Dick Cheney and Newt Gingrich in his American series – and has hit the headlines on both sides of the Atlantic after causing a near-riot at a rodeo and for goading rednecks into singing a racist song in an Arizona bar.


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