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Borat DVD a top seller in Kazakhstan
Though they often bear the brunt of his jokes, Kazakh citizens have apparently rushed online to buy Sacha Baron Cohen’s Borat film, released on DVD worldwide last week.
According to the British arm of online retail giant Amazon, the DVD of Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan was the most-ordered product from Kazakhstan.
“With the controversy the film caused around the world, it seems residents of Kazakhstan are now desperate to see what all the fuss is about,” Rakhi Parekh, head of media at, told the Hollywood Reporter trade newspaper.
No specific sales figures were released.
At the time of its release last November, a growing chorus of Kazakh movie critics and cultural commentators praised Cohen and the film, saying it drew attention to the former Soviet Republic.
Other sought after items by Kazakhs included the album The Very Best of Sting and the Police, the second season of TV’s Stargate Atlantis on DVD and books like Leading at a Higher Level: Blanchard on How to Be a High Performing Leader and The Ultimate Pool Maintenance Manual: Spas, Pools, Hot Tubs, Rockscapes and Other Water Features.
Last week, the U.S State Department criticized Kazakhstan for its past action against British comedian and actor Cohen.
In 2005, the Kazakh government shut down Cohen’s Kazakhstan-based website because of his continued performances as his fictional character Borat รณ a crass and offensive reporter who spouts anti-Semitic, sexist and generally ridiculous comments about his home country and other subjects.
Cohen first introduced the character on his cable TV program Da Ali G Show. The hit film, for which Cohen won a Golden Globe Award, depicts Borat wandering through the U.S. purportedly making a documentary and portraying Kazahks as well as Americans in an unflattering light. As with his show, the film has drawn controversy and even sparked several lawsuits against Cohen.