Filmmakers Dispute Claims in ‘Borat’ Lawsuit Filed by Estate of Late Holocaust Survivor
Claims made by the family of a late Holocaust survivor in a recently-filed lawsuit against the creator and distributor of British Jewish actor Sacha Baron Cohen’s new “Borat” movie are being disputed, Deadline reported on Thursday.
In a lawsuit filed in Georgia earlier this week, the estate of Judith Dim Evans, who passed away this summer, asserted that she was asked to speak about the Holocaust for what she thought was a serious documentary. The suit charged that Evans was interviewed “under false pretenses with the intent of appropriating her likeness” and that had she “been informed about the true nature of the film and purpose for the interview, she would not have agreed to participate in the interview.”
Baron Cohen’s movie, titled “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan,” is set to become available on Amazon Prime next week.
However, sources close to the filmmakers told Deadline that Evans was told about the satirical nature of the project after it was shot and there was footage to prove it.
Baron Cohen has also dedicated the upcoming film to Evans, Deadline reported. The actor has been outspoken against Holocaust denial and criticized social media platforms last year for allowing the spread of antisemitic lies and distortions online under the guise of free speech.
He was also said to have done something for Evans that he had never done in regards to his “Borat” films, where everyone except him is an unwitting participant.
“Out of respect he had someone tell Evans and the friend who shares the scene with her that Baron Cohen himself is Jewish and playing an ignorant character as a means of Holocaust education, by featuring a Holocaust survivor who ends up challenging the antisemite by charmingly telling her own story,” Deadline reported.
Furthermore, the filmmakers behind “Borat” reportedly helped Evans’ family launch a website in her honor, and Baron Cohen and Amazon Prime will offer bonus content for viewers of the film who want to hear Evans tell the story of what happened to her family during World War II.