The daily gossip: Sacha Baron Cohen feared for his life during a Borat 2 prank, too much kissing got a musician axed from SNL, and more

Jeva Lange
Sacha Baron Cohen.
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Sacha Baron Cohen says he was 'fortunate to make it out' after pranking a gun-rights rally for Borat 2

Ahead of the release of the Borat sequel, Sacha Baron Cohen recounted how during one prank for the film, he was "fortunate to make it out in one piece." In an essay for Time, Baron Cohen described infiltrating a right-wing rally, where he duped the crowd into singing a shocking racist song. "When organizers finally stormed the stage, I rushed to a nearby get-away vehicle," Baron Cohen wrote. "An angry crowd blocked our way … Under my overalls, I was wearing a bulletproof vest, but it felt inadequate with some people outside toting semiautomatic weapons." Baron Cohen said he's "feared for my life" a few times, but ahead of the 2020 election, "I'm truly terrified — for the survival of democracy itself." Read Baron Cohen's full essay at Time. [Time, The Week]


Morgan Wallen gets tossed from SNL after making out with random fans

Country music star Morgan Wallen will no longer be this week's musical guest on Saturday Night Live after he was caught partying maskless and making out with randos following Alabama's win against Texas A&M last weekend. Wallen "became the star of several TikTok videos afterward as he got very up close and personal with celebrating fans," TMZ writes, with critics claiming his reckless behavior was "gonna spread COVID to every gal at Bama." SNL evidently worried he was going to spread it to every cast member on set, too; he was cut from the program for breaking COVID-19 protocol. "I wish I could have made country music and my fans proud this Saturday," a regretful Wallan said. Next time, just keep your cooties to yourself. [TMZ, NPR]


Sarah Silverman met her new boyfriend while playing Call of Duty

Comedian Sarah Silverman met her new man by playing Call of Duty: WWII, she confessed during an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Thursday. "As the world was shutting down, I thought I should start playing video games again," Silverman, 49, explained. Someone she knew "peripherally" through mutual friends then reached out about playing online together. "So every night at 7:05 — I was in New York, so at 7 we would bang the pots and pans out on the fire escape ... Then at 7:05, I'd put my headset on and I'd kill Nazis with this guy. Yadda yadda yadda, we're boyfriend and girlfriend!" While Silverman declined to identify her boyfriend by name, she confirmed, "he's living out here and it's great." Congrats to the happy Nazi-murdering couple! [The Ellen DeGeneres Show , Just Jared]


Stars of Netflix's Deaf U explain President Trump's irreverent — but perfect — 'sign name'

"Sign names" are how deaf people quickly refer to themselves and each other; "instead of spelling our names out," explained one of the students featured in Netflix's forthcoming reality series, Deaf U, "we use sign names based on our traits." Someone might sign the word for "candy" to refer to themselves, because they love candy, for example. But sign names can also be given — such as to President Trump. "You can tell if someone's a Trump supporter: they will spell out his name, T-R-U-M-P," one of the students explained. "But if you don't like the man, you're gonna go like this" — a hand waving gesture at the brow, as if to indicate flapping hair — "'Cause we all know that man has a toupee." [Vulture]


Netflix drops trailer for Mank, David Fincher's first film in 6 years

The Artist walked so Mank could run. On Thursday, Netflix dropped a delightfully old-timey sizzle reel for David Fincher's forthcoming period piece about Herman Mankiewicz, the screenwriter of Orson Welles' pioneering 1941 classic, Citizen Kane. Mank is Fincher's first movie since 2014's Gone Girl, and the trailer is a smorgasbord of Hollywood Golden Age delights, from its title art to Netflix's riff on the RKO Pictures logo. "It's so freaking good," Aaron Sorkin, who wrote Fincher's The Social Network, has raved of Mank. "Written by [Fincher's] dad, who is a brilliant screenwriter … It's breathtaking … Gary Oldman gives an amazing performance [as Mankiewicz], so does Lily Collins, and so does Amanda Seyfried as Marion Davies." It's also pandemic proof: Netflix will release Mank on streaming on Dec. 4. [Netflix, Indiewire]