Borat Sued Againby Contributor | 05 December 2007
A driving instructor has become the latest 'star' of the Borat film to sue the film makers after its huge box-office success.
Michael Psenicska, a mathematics teacher and driving instructor from Baltimore, is seeking over $100,000 (£48,860) from lead actor Sacha Baron Cohen, production house 20th Century Fox and other parties, accusing the filmmakers of telling him they were making a documentary.
In a suit filed at the US district court in Manhattan yesterday Mr Psenicska said he had been paid $500 (£245) to give Cohen's fictional Kazakh journalist a driving lesson, on the proviso that the scenes would be used for a feature about "the integration of foreign people into the American way of life".
Mr Psenicska is shown struggling to control Cohen's character Borat Sagdiyev as he drinks alcohol while driving, offers a female pedestrian money for "sexy time", makes ethnic slurs and drives on the wrong side of the road.
He alleges he would not have taken part in the film had he known the true nature of the mockumentary comedy.
However 20th Century Fox have claimed the driving instructor consented to filming and that his current legal claim is inspired by the movie's substantial success at the box office.
"He signed a release, and we have an agreement," spokesman Gregg Brilliant said. "Now, two-and-a-half years after giving his consent and more than one year after the movie was released, Mr Psenicska has decided to file a lawsuit, citing the financial success of the film, in spite of our agreement."
The 2006 film has inspired several lawsuits from allegedly unwitting cast members, including two college fraternity members, a group of southern conservatives, the residents of a Romanian village and a businessman who claims he was subjected to ridicule after being shown fleeing from the British comedian posing as Borat.
Mr Psenicska claims he is entitled to damages as his image was used in advertising for the film.