Sasha Baron Cohen will not be banned from the Oscars on Sunday, an Academy spokesperson has announced. The actor/comedian was rumored to be prohibited from the prestigious awards after rumors circulated that he would attend dressed as his satirical character --The Dictator-- from his new film.
We haven't banned him, a spokesperson told the Hollywood Reporter, We're just waiting to hear what he's going to do.
The Academy has, however, stressed that a red carpet stunt to promote his new film will not be welcomed at the awards. We don't think it's appropriate, the prospect of Cohen hijacking the red carpet to plug his movie, an Academy spokesperson told the Hollywood Reporter.
Rumors started to circulate after the Hollywood Reporter claimed that sources close to Cohan have said that the actor would be pulling his biggest stunt yet. Cohan has been invited to the Oscars as a cast member of HUGO, which is up for several nominations including Best Picture.
The sources told the Hollywood Reporter than Cohan has gone as far as informing Paramount Pictures of his intentions for Oscar night. His new film The Dictator, Cohan plays a satirical character--a cross between Moammar Gadhafi and Saddam Hussein--who fights to stop democracy in his country.
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We would love to have Sacha Baron Cohen at the Oscar show, a spokesperson for the Academy told CNN. We have expressed [to Cohen] that we don't like our red carpet to be used as a promotional stunt. We're waiting to hear from him. We've put the ball in his court.
The 40-year-old British actor rose to fame through his HBO series, Da Ali G Show, which was then followed by Borat and then Bruno. Cohan is known for attending award ceremonies in character. He turned up to the MTV Video Music Awards as Bruno--a homosexual fashion enthusiast. The stunt attracted attention form millions of viewers around the world.