‘Evil, exploitative, sick’: Sarah Palin rips Sacha Baron Cohen for ‘duping’ her into TV interview disguised as a wounded US military veteran
The British actor and comedian spent a year undercover filming his new series for the Showtime channel, snagging sit-downs with Bernie Sanders, Dick Cheney and Palin
Sarah Palin has called Sacha Baron Cohen “evil, exploitative and sick” after revealing that the satirist had “duped” her into an interview for an upcoming series by posing as a wounded military veteran.
On Monday it was revealed that Baron Cohen had spent a year undercover filming a new project for the Showtime channel. The series, Who is America?, explores a range of figures “across the political and cultural spectrum” and is reported to feature interviews with Bernie Sanders, Dick Cheney – and Palin.
A teaser released for the show features a clip of Cheney being asked to sign a “waterboarding kit”.
“Yup – we were duped. Ya’ got me, Sacha. Feel better now? I join a long list of American public personalities who have fallen victim to the evil, exploitative, sick ‘humour’ of the British ‘comedian’,” Palin wrote in a Facebook post addressing the incident.
The former governor of Alaska said she had travelled to Washington with one of her daughters for the interview, which she believed was for a “legit” historical documentary on Showtime.
She said that Baron Cohen had “heavily disguised himself as a disabled US veteran, fake wheelchair and all” for the interview.
“I sat through a long ‘interview’ full of Hollywoodism’s disrespect and sarcasm – but finally had enough and literally, physically removed my mic and walked out, much to Cohen’s chagrin,” she said.
“The disrespect of our US military and middle-class Americans via Cohen’s foreign commentaries under the guise of interview questions was perverse,” Palin said.
Palin also claimed that once the interview had ended, the show’s producers purposely dropped her and her daughter off at the wrong airport, knowing that they would be unable to catch a flight back to Alaska, and refused to assist the pair in getting home.
The 2008 vice-presidential candidate went on to call for Cohen and Showtime to donate profits from the series to “a charitable group that actually respects and supports American vets”.
The Guardian contacted Showtime for comment on Palin’s claims.
Who Is America? begins on Sunday in the US, with Channel 4 airing the series in Britain on Monday.