Sacha Baron Cohen Explains Why He Cut Sarah Palin From ‘Who Is America?’

Sarah Palin was the first major political figure to admit that she had been “duped” by comedian Sacha Baron Cohen for his Showtime series Who Is America? But when the show aired last summer, her appearance was left on the cutting-room floor. The series finale comically credited Palin as “Special Publicity Consultant (Inadvertent)” for helping to promote the show, but until now neither Baron Cohen nor Showtime had offered an explanation for why her segment had been left out. In a new interview with Deadline, the Golden Globe-nominated actor revealed the simple reason: It “just wasn’t funny enough.” Baron Cohen, who recently invited Palin to be his date to the upcoming award show, said there was “a lot of pressure on me from the channel” to put out her segment, but ultimately he felt it didn’t reach his standards. “For the pieces to be good, there has to be a good comic dynamic,” he said. “She was just delivering these kind of rote answers, as if she was doing a campaign speech. And even though I sat with her I think for about two-and-a-half hours, there was no comedy gold.”