Saturday 24 August 2019

Sacha Baron Cohen thanks Cheney and Palin after Emmy nods

Who Is America? received three nominations.

Sacha Baron Cohen (Ian West/PA)
Sacha Baron Cohen (Ian West/PA)

By Laura Harding, PA Senior Entertainment Correspondent

Sacha Baron Cohen has thanked Dick Cheney and Sarah Palin after his skewering satire Who Is America? was nominated for three Emmys.

The series, in which the comedian created a string of characters to interview people from across the political spectrum, received nods for outstanding variety sketch series, directing and editing.

Former vice presidential candidate Ms Palin was ultimately cut from the show, which aired on Channel 4 in the UK, while the inclusion of former vice president Mr Cheney made headlines when Cohen got him to sign a waterboarding kit.

The comedian wrote on Twitter: “Thank you to the Emmys for the nominations for Who Is America. It was a bare-bones production – I went out into the heartland of this country armed only with a camera crew, a makeup kit and my trusted pedophile detector.

“I want to thank my crack team of researchers told to uncover bigotry, racism and hate in the US. That took them about 30 seconds … they just started following the President.

“While I am flattered at these nods, it is a shame that my co-stars were not recognized. Particularly Dick Cheney, who I had hoped would come across on camera as someone who’d gleefully sent hundreds of thousands to their pointless death – and boy did he deliver.

“I’ve played some lunatics in my time, but the look of vacuous evil in his eyes as he autographed a waterboard kit, would put Daniel Day Lewis to shame.

“There’s one more person I need to thank even though she didn’t appear in the final project, Sarah Palin.

“Sarah, if you are out there, and you are WAY out there, please know the last time unseen footage generated as much interest, was when Donald Trump visited a Moscow hotel room.”

Other nominees offered more sincere thanks after they received their nods.

Ava DuVernay paid tribute to the Central Park Five after her drama series about five young black men wrongly convicted of the rape of a jogger in Central Park was nominated for 16 Emmys.

When They See Us, which stars The Wire actor Michael Kenneth Williams, Joshua Jackson, Vera Farmiga and Niecy Nash, tells the true story of five teenagers –Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana and Korey Wise – and their battle for exoneration.

The director wrote on Twitter: “Thank you to the real men for inviting me to tell their story. Thank you @TelevisionAcad for honoring the work. Saluting every single crew and cast member. And saluting Raymond, Korey, Antron, Yusef and Kevin. Love you, brothers.”

Natasha Lyonne said she was “in awe” after she received a leading comedy actress nod for her role in the Netflix series Russian Doll, about a woman who keeps on living the same night over and over again.

She wrote: “In awe. Life is a real magical mystery tour! Congratulations to all the brilliant forces who made our special show.

“So proud & profoundly grateful.”

Christina Applegate also shared her excitement after she was nominated in the same category, tweeting: “Uhhhhh. Shocked. Grateful. Holy crap!!! Thank you thank you thank you!!!

“Best part of the morning was my kid finding out and she screamed. Haha.”

This Is Us creator Dan Fogelman celebrated his show’s success after it was nominated in the best drama series category, while stars Mandy Moore, Milo Ventimiglia and Sterling K Brown all received acting nods.

He said: “So grateful to the @TelevisionAcad for the best drama Emmy nom for #ThisIsUs. And thrilled to see Mandy, Sterling, Milo, Sully, Ron, Phylicia, Michael, and (my college roomate) Sidd all recognized!

“A great day for all of ‘Us’. Now back to set to do a stunt with a dog.”

Bradley Whitford, who is nominated for the outstanding guest actor in a drama prize for his turn as Commander Lawrence in The Handmaid’s Tale, wrote simply: “Whoa…”

The Emmys will be handed out in Los Angeles on September 29.

PA Media

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