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While Donald Trump was busy fending off his Republican rivals in Detroit Thursday night, British comedian Sacha Baron Cohen unleashed a satirical attack of his own on the current frontrunner for the Republican nomination.
Appearing at the U.S. premiere of his new movie, The Brothers Grimsby, in Westwood, Baron Cohen pretended to endorse Trump for president, calling him “the ultimate soccer hooligan” and “a loud, ranting bloke” and predicting that Trump, whom he claimed is in need of money having squandered away a fortune, will pick Bill Cosby as his running mate.
Wearing one of Trump’s signature “Make America Great Again” red caps, Baron Cohen spoke before a screening of Grimsby, a raunchy, R-rated comedy in which Baron Cohen himself plays something of bloke who joins forces with his brother, an international superspy, played by Mark Strong. The movie, which already has opened in the U.K. and will be released by Sony Pictures in the U.S. on March 11, already is earning notoriety for a scene in the end credits in which Trump accidentally contracts AIDS from blood that goes flying when a Daniel Radcliffe-type character is shot.
The Huffington Post reported Thursday that the studio is nervous about repercussions from famously litigious and outspoken Trump and had asked Baron Cohen to cut out the scene, but he declined. But a Sony spokesperson told The Hollywood Reporter that that suggestion was “absolutely ridiculous” and that Baron Cohen had not been asked to remove the scene. Trump’s campaign did not respond to a request for comment.
The movie does carry a comic disclaimer making it clear the real Trump didn’t participate and that he does not have AIDS.
Baron Cohen is not fan of Trump. During an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, he morphed into his Borat character and said of Trump: “The only person who would ban Muslims is someone with a brain like a female chicken.”
At Thursday’s premiere, the comedian began his introductory riff by proclaiming, “Donald Julio Trump for president!”
Baron Cohen explained, “Initially I was going to endorse that crazy, liberal socialist, Ted Cruz. But it was Donald’s rallies that won me over. It’s like football matches in England: shouting, violence, abuse. The only difference is that we don’t throw the black people out. In fact, Donald is — and it’s the best thing about him — the ultimate soccer hooligan. He’ll listen thoughtfully to the other side’s argument … and then he’ll kick their f—ing heads in. Now some of you out there are worried about Trump. It’s absolute nonsense, all right? History has shown that a loud, ranting bloke [shouting] out racial hatred at rallies has never hurt anyone.”
Baron Cohen continued, “Donald Trump loves everyone, not just people of color … orange. In fact, he’s going to choose as his running mate that retired black doctor who’s had a bit of a drop in popularity. You know, Bill Cosby.
“Now listen, we need a businessman to run this country, and Trump is a bloody business genius. In the ’70s he inherited a mere $40 million. If he just put it in a bank, by now he would be worth $8 million, but instead, through careful investments and business acquisitions, he’s now worth an amazing $4 million. Which is why I’m giving him half of my weekly unemployment benefits to his campaign.”
At that point, Baron Cohen held up a large check for $36.20 before concluding, “People of America, please vote Donald Julio Trump, and let’s turn the White House into the Orange House!”
Cheryl Cheng contributed to this report.
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