Sacha Baron Cohen's Oscar Controversy

by David Weiner 10:14 AM PST, February 23, 2012
Photo: Paramount Pictures

UPDATE: The Dictator has released a statement on his website in response to the controversy: "Admiral General Aladeen will deliver a formal response to being banned from The Oscars by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Zionists."


Sacha Baron Cohen is no stranger to controversy, and his latest attempted stunt has once again made headlines.

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Word got out that Cohen had intended to attend this Sunday's Academy Awards as his brand-new character, The Dictator (which arrives in theaters this May), but was shot down by the Academy and had his tickets for Hollywood's biggest night revoked.

Within seconds, the story had blown up on the Twittersphere and in the press that Cohen had been "banned" from the ceremony, but now the Academy is setting the record straight, with a spokesperson telling The Hollywood Reporter, "We haven't banned him. We're just waiting to hear what he's going to do."

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Cohen is invited as a cast member of the Oscar-nominated Hugo, and of the idea of using the Oscar red carpet as a vehicle to draw attention to his new movie, the Academy spokesperson says, "We don't think it's appropriate. But his tickets haven't been pulled. We're waiting to hear back."

What will Cohen do on Oscar Sunday? Tune in to the 84th Annual Academy Awards on ABC to find out!