How many pun-filled dictator jokes can Sacha Baron Cohen fit in a minute-and-a-half video? A lot, apparently.
After rumors surfaced that Cohen was banned from walking this year's Oscars red carpet dressed as Admiral General Aladeen -- the satirical despotic character from his upcoming movie "The Dictator" -- the Academy Awards released a statement claiming that no such decision had been made regarding the star's tickets. (He is -- was? -- originally coming to this year's show in support of his role in Best Picture nominee "Hugo.")
Whatever the Academy's decision, however, it was only a matter of time before General Aladeen responded to the "ban." Obviously, he was not pleased.
"On behalf of the nation of Wadiya, I am outraged at being banned from the Oscars by the Academy of Motion Pictures of Arts and Zionists," exclaimed Aladeen. "While I applaud the Academy from taking away my right to free speech, I warn you that if you do not lift your sanctions and give me my tickets back by 12 p.m. on Sunday, you will face unimaginable consequences."
Aladeen also makes an effort to campaign for some of Wadiya's "classic" films that didn't receive any Oscar recognition: "When Harry Kidnapped Sally," "You've Got Mailbomb" and "Planet of the Rapes." (Actually, there's a good chance that second one is better than the original Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan flick.)
Anyway, whether Aladeen's consequences refer to him kidnapping Uggie (please, no) remain to be seen. Whatever the case, both Cohen and Aladeen are getting a nice chunk of publicity out of this whole thing.
"The Dictator," starring Cohen and Ben Kingsley, will hit theaters May 11.