'Borat' Gets Taste Of His Own Medicine

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'Borat' Gets Taste Of His Own Medicine

Tue Nov 18, 2008 @ 12:42PM PST

By Eriq Gardner

Borat When Fox brought "Borat" into theaters, it was flooded with an avalanche of fraud and rights-of-publicity lawsuits from plaintiffs who claimed they had been duped into appearing in the faux documentary. (Here, here, and here.)

Now one clever film producer has evidently turned the tables on Sasha Baron Cohen and his gang by coming out with a film called "Carmen Meets Borat," a story about a 17-year-old Romanian girl whose plan to emigrate to Spain falls to pieces when an American film crew descends on her village to shoot the "Borat" film.

The film is premiering at a film festival in Amsterdam next week, and the website includes a detailed synopsis that even jests at the above-mentioned failed lawsuits: "When the film is released, the world press throws itself on the village and jealousy and suspicion predominate. The chaos is made complete when an American lawyer holds out the prospect of a $30 million insurance claim to the villagers."

Now the question is whether Fox will allow the "Borat" franchise to be exploited by a renegade filmmaker. And just in case any trademark lawyers at the studio haven't been following the international scene and weren't aware of the film, the makers of "Carmen Meets Borat" have taken out advertisements inviting Cohen to the premiere.

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The Hollywood Reporter, Esq. blog focuses on how the entertainment and media industries are impacted and influenced by the law. It is edited by Matthew Belloni with contributions from veteran legal reporter Eriq Gardner and others. Before joining The Hollywood Reporter, Belloni was a lawyer at an entertainment litigation firm in Los Angeles. He writes a column for THR devoted to entertainment law. Gardner is a New York-based writer and legal journalist. Send tips or comments to [email protected]

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