Lawsuit of Family of Holocaust Survivor Featured in ‘Borat’ Sequel Dismissed by Judge
A lawsuit filed by the estate of recently-deceased Holocaust survivor Judith Dim Evans against Sacha Baron Cohen’s new “Borat” film has been dismissed by a judge in Georgia.
Following the ruling by Fulton County Georgia Judge Kevin Farmer, Amazon’s attorney Russell Smith said in a statement: “The lawsuit was dismissed, unconditionally. The lawsuit is over.”
“Sacha Baron Cohen was deeply grateful for the opportunity to work with Judith Dim Evans, whose compassion and courage as a Holocaust survivor has touched the hearts of millions of people who have seen the film,” he added. “Judith’s life is a powerful rebuke to those who deny the Holocaust, and with this film and his activism, Sacha Baron Cohen will continue his advocacy to combat Holocaust denial around the world.”
“Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan” is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video.
Evans’ family claimed in their lawsuit that the Holocaust survivor, who died over the summer, thought she was participating in a legitimate documentary when she filmed an interview with Baron Cohen who, in character as Borat Sagdiyev, asked her about the Holocaust.
The lawsuit stated that Baron Cohen interviewed her “under false pretenses with the intent of appropriating her likeness.”
Sources close to the filmmakers disputed the lawsuit’s claims, saying Evans was informed of the satirical nature of the project after it was shot and there was footage to prove it.
Baron Cohen dedicated the sequel to Evans, and the filmmakers reportedly helped Evans’ family launch a website in her honor. Also for the first time while making his films, in which almost everyone is an unwitting participant, out of respect for Evans and the friend who shares the scene with her, Baron Cohen revealed he was Jewish and playing an ignorant character to make a case about the importance of Holocaust education.
Indeed in the film, Borat meets Evans in a synagogue and during their lengthy conversation, she tells him about surviving the Holocaust.
When he replies, “But the Holocaust didn’t happen,” Evans says, “I saw it with my own eyes,” Borat then gleefully responds, “The Holocaust happened, really?! Thank you, Judith. You make me so happy!” in a scene that is meant to promote Holocaust education in an effort to combat misinformation.