Kazakhstan adopts Borat's 'very nice!' catchphrase in new tourism campaign

Luke O'Reilly
·2 min read
Courtesy of Amazon Studios
Courtesy of Amazon Studios

The home country of the movie character Borat has adopted his “very nice!” catchphrase for a new tourism campaign.

A Kazakh tourism chief said the catchphrase, popularised by Sascha Baron Cohen's character, offers the "perfect description" of the country's tourism potential.

Amazon Prime last week released Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, the sequel to the 2006 film Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan. The new film has sparked controversy over a scene where former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani is caught putting his hands down his trousers after an interview with an actress playing Borat's teenage daughter .

In both films, Sacha Baron Cohen plays a Kazakh journalist making a documentary film in the US. The original movie provoked outrage over its satirical portrayal of the country.

Kairat Sadvakassov, the deputy chairman of Kazakh Tourism, said that Kazakhs are some of the nicest people in the world.

“Kazakhstan’s nature is very nice; its food is very nice; and its people, despite Borat’s jokes to the contrary, are some of the nicest in the world," he told the Huffington Post.

"We would like everyone to come experience Kazakhstan for themselves by visiting our country in 2021 and beyond, so that they can see that Borat’s homeland is nicer than they may have heard."

In 2006 the original Borat film caused controversy in Kazakhstan (Courtesy of Amazon Studios)
In 2006 the original Borat film caused controversy in Kazakhstan (Courtesy of Amazon Studios)

The Kazakh tourism board has even released a trailer to go with the campaign, showing a tourist who describes hiking, drinking fermented horse milk, and posing with Kazakhs as "very nice".

In 2006, the original film was denounced by Kazakhstan's government, who threatened to sue Mr Cohen. The country even launched a multi-million pound tourism campaign to counter the film.

However, by 2010 a tenfold rise in tourism visas to Kazakhstan was attributed to Borat. Kazakh Foreign Minister Yerzhan Kazykhanov said: "I am grateful to 'Borat' for helping attract tourists to Kazakhstan."

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