With all the dramatic developments of the Arab Spring that has occurred in over a year, it's not a surprise that Hollywood is coming out with a movie that uses some of the subject as inspiration. Whether categorized as insensitive material or mere entertainment, Paramount has big hopes for Sacha Baron Cohen's latest comedy titled The Dictator.
Cohen is already known for pushing the envelope with daring characters that border on the racially- and culturally-risqué, such as Borat. This time, the high profile actor-comedian is rumored to be planning on attending this year's Academy Awards red carpet dressed up as The Dictator's title character, to the dismay of the Oscars' organization.
A spokesperson for the Oscars even went so far as to say, "We would hope that every studio knows that this is a bad idea. The Red Carpet is not about stunting." I am not sure how this person can claim with a straight face that there is a lack of "stunting" on any red carpet, let alone the Academy Awards, but this is the stance that most "purists" are taking in their chagrin towards a costumed Cohen.
Seems to me they're being not only rather uptight about the industry they work in but also pretty hypocritical. If this costume offends people in any way, they should probably recall the concept of storytelling as well as reevaluate some Hollywood issues that actually deserve some ethical critique -- Woody Allen and Roman Polanski come to mind right away. If Hollywood can stomach looking the other way from the decisions of those two glorified filmmakers, who seriously cares about a silly costume on the red carpet? If anything it might keep things interesting!
The trailer is pretty awesome though, especially with the Panjabi MC tunes in the background: