Capturing Rudy Giuliani on film sticking his hands down his pants while being interviewed by a young woman he just met is easily one of the biggest, most memorable moments of Borat Subsequent Moviefilm. There’s a reason it was saved until the very end of the movie, and to this day, Sacha Baron Cohen and his team still can’t believe the scene actually happened. Director Jason Woliner recently revealed that Giuliani was given several opportunities to realize he was being played, but he never once caught on as he continued to try and seduce Borat’s daughter played by Maria Bakalova.
In a new interview with Variety, Cohen opens up about trying to ensnare at least one member of Trump’s inner circle (Donald Trump Jr. was a potential target at one point) before finding an opening with Giuliani, but the team ran into a potentially dangerous obstacle. Due to filming during the pandemic, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm was following strict guidelines to protect the cast and crew including routine testing. Giuliani, however, refused to take a rapid test. Obviously, this presented an ethical nightmare for the production.
“There was this debate of what do we do?” Cohen told Variety. “Do we go ahead with this scene? What happens if he has coronavirus? We concluded that it was worth the risk.”
While Borat Subsequent Moviefilm is technically a comedy, the film is ultimately about exposing the “danger of Trump and Trumpism,” which have helped lead to the current pandemic conditions in America. So for Cohen, it was worth the risk to expose Giuliani, who as close to Trump’s inner circle as it gets, and the Borat star is very pleased with the final outcome. “I do feel happy that every time his name is mentioned as he tries to undermine the election, people are reminded that this is the guy with his hand down his underpants.”