Thursday, November 09, 2006

the real borat























i've been wondering when the bok* would hit the fan about borat and his origins.

the real borat is taking action against sacha baron cohen, and will be flying to england to confront the comedian and get a piece of the action. mahir cagri, 44, a turkish freelance journalist, was one of the first people to enjoy world-wide internet fame. he posted his website, or a friend did without his knowledge, i can't quite remember the details, and it became an instant hit, not with the ladies as he hoped, but with people who thought it was hilarious and started sending the link around the world.

this is the original site:
http://www.istanbul.tc/mahir/mahir/

and this is one slightly modified, after mahir's celebrity took off:
http://www.ikissyou.org/

i first heard about mahir in 1999, which i believe was well before borat surfaced. apparently, sacha baron cohen has said the inspiration for borat was a doctor he met in southern russia.

"I can't remember his name — he was a doctor" Baron Cohen said. "The moment I met him, I was totally crying. He was a hysterically funny guy, albeit totally unintentionally."

while i'm sure there are many borat-type individuals around the world, authentico or not, i suspect that there might be a few too many similarities for this to be a coincidence.

consider, if you will, the following points of comparison.

1. ping pong.

mahir was playing table tennis way before borat

















2. sunbathing


and sunbathing in fetching togs - granted they are not those lime green godawful over-the-shoulder things, but still. you can see the pattern here.

















3. disco dancing

enjoying the disco dancing
















*bok = turkish for shit


article where i got this from:

Turkish man says he's the real Borat
By SUZAN FRASER, Associated Press WriterTue Nov 7, 9:16 AM ET
A Turkish Internet celebrity is so convinced he was the inspiration for Sacha Baron Cohen's "Borat" character, he's traveling to London seeking an apology and a way to get paid from the film's surprise success.


Mahir Cagri 44, became a cyber celebrity after posting a personal Web site in 1999, featuring unintentionally amusing photos of himself playing pingpong or the accordion and sunbathing in a skimpy bathing suit. Fans were captivated by his broken English and hilarious invitation to women: "Who is want to come TURKEY I can invitate ... She can stay my home."

"The world knows he is copying Mahir," Cagri told The Associated Press in a telephone interview from his hometown of Izmir on Monday, minutes before he was to board a plane for Istanbul to appear on a talk show.

"I am not saying this — the world is. I have received so many e-mails from people in the United States who tell me he is imitating me," he said.

Cagri, a freelance journalist, was scheduled to fly to London on Tuesday for meetings with his manager and lawyer there to discuss his options and hold interviews with British newspapers. He hopes to receive an "acknowledgment or an apology" from Baron Cohen.

"The bombshell is going to fall," he said of his London trip. "(Cohen) is making money by using me."
The title character in the movie "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan" was first developed for "Da Ali G Show" on HBO. The 20th Century Fox movie took in $26.5 million in the U.S. its opening weekend, more than any other film.

On the commentary track to the DVD of "Da Ali G Show," Baron Cohen says Borat was influenced by someone he met in southern Russia.

"I can't remember his name — he was a doctor" Baron Cohen said. "The moment I met him, I was totally crying. He was a hysterically funny guy, albeit totally unintentionally."

The character Borat has caused outrage among Kazakhs over the way their nation is being jokingly portrayed.

Cagri set up his Web site in the hope of making foreign friends and welcoming guests from abroad to his home. The Turk quickly became a celebrity, much to his surprise.


this article, however, indicates that borat might have been around before 1999.

"In 1998 he came to the attention of the producers of Channel 4's 11 O' Clock Show. He had already perfected Borat..."

so who really knows? life imitating art?

7 comments:

BEVIS said...

Yes, I've had both linked on my blog, like, forever (complete with a little blue asterisk to indicate that there are arguments for and against the idea that Mahir inspired Borat).

Hehe.

But even if he did; it's inspiration, not plagarism! Sacha will eat him for breakfast.

MelbourneGirl said...

that's right bevis. i might remind you though that i think i gave you that link to mahir, or reminded you of his site, and the similarities to borat, all those months ago. and then you linked them.

of course sacha will eat him for breakfast. he is a comedian and smart, whereas mahir is just a poor skinny daggy turk.

but i feel for the underdog. although some of the pics on his updated website show him with babes. i hope he got a couple of roots out of it.

Rowena said...

MG, I remember that Mahir guy! Had not thought of him at all since I checked out his site years ago.

This is all very interesting.

BEVIS said...

That's right, MG, you did give me that link. You hold the answers to most things, I find. And the key to the universe.

Remember how I borrowed it once, when I lost my key down the back of the couch?

MelbourneGirl said...

you are a funny little frog aren't you?

BEVIS said...

Sleep deprivation's to blame.

Cynthiahhuk said...

MG, I remember that Mahir guy! Had not thought of him at all since I checked out his site years ago. This is all very interesting.