Entertainment

Borat 2 Roasts Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for Blackface

An opening scene features Trudeau's Aladdin costume, one of several times he wore blackface.
Manisha Krishnan
Toronto, Canada
October 23, 2020, 2:59pm
Justin Trudeau Borat Blackface

Less than five minutes into Borat 2, a movie that will surely mostly focus on the dumpster fire that is U.S. politics, creator Sacha Baren Cohen throws Canadians a bone, slipping in a joke about Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s blackface. 

The sequel, called Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, picks up 14 years after the original, where Borat is now working in a gulag. 

He gets plucked from the labour camp and taken to visit Kazakhstan’s president, who tells him that the U.S. was “ruined by an evil man who stood against all American values. His name? Barack Obama.”

“This led to other Africans becoming political leaders,” Borat continues, as the screen cuts to a photo of Trudeau dressed as Aladdin in blackface.

The photo, published by Time magazine in 2019, was taken at an Arabian Nights themed party at West Point Grey Academy, a Vancouver private school, in 2001. After it surfaced, Trudeau conceded that he had worn blackface multiple times, including while singing “Day-O” by Harry Belafonte. 

The prime minister’s cameo explains why the mockumentary’s content warning says it features “sexuality, drug use, foul language, nudity, blackface.” 

VICE News has reached out to the Prime Minister’s Office for comment and will update this story if we hear back. 

Trudeau likely got off pretty easy. In another scene, former New York City Mayor and staunch Trump supporter Rudy Giuliani gets caught with his hand down his pants following an interview with a  right-wing “journalist” posing as Borat’s daughter. 

Giuliani has since denied he was pulling a Jeffrey Toobin, tweeting: “The Borat video is a complete fabrication. I was tucking in my shirt after taking off the recording equipment. At no time before, during, or after the interview was I ever inappropriate.”

A giant inflatable Borat, donning his signature thong, also temporarily took over Toronto's waterfront, adding to the anticipation. 

Many people will likely be watching the movie this weekend, given that no one has plans due to the pandemic. 

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