While filming Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (I will type the full title every time), Sacha Baron Cohen attended a gun rights rally in in Olympia, Washington, in character. Not as Borat, but as the “leader of a political action committee who wanted to sponsor the rally.” The actor “brought his own security team who prevented organizers from kicking him off stage once he began singing and turning off the power to his microphone,” Variety reported, as it did not take long for event organizers, who later admitted they had been “catfished,” to realize what was happening. It was long enough, however, for Baron Cohen to get attendees to sing along to a satirical ditty with racist lyrics about Obama and the “Wuhan flu.” But once the jig was up, things got dangerous.
“While filming my latest Borat film, I showed up as a right-wing singer at a gun-rights rally in Washington State. When organizers finally stormed the stage, I rushed to a nearby get-away vehicle,” Baron Cohen wrote for Time magazine in an article about the dangers of misinformation and conspiracy theories. “An angry crowd blocked our way and started pounding on the vehicle with their fists.” He continued:
Under my overalls, I was wearing a bulletproof vest, but it felt inadequate with some people outside toting semiautomatic weapons. When someone ripped open the door to drag me out, I used my entire body weight to pull the door back shut until our vehicle maneuvered free. I was fortunate to make it out in one piece. The next few weeks will determine whether America will be so lucky.
Here’s footage from the event.
Borat Subsequent Moviefilm premieres on Amazon Prime Video on October 23.