The Book of Bruno

It may seem effortless, but Sacha Baron Cohen’s “Bruno” is nothing short of an artform. In a new book, And Here’s the Kicker, Dan Mazer, Sacha Baron Cohen’s grade school buddy and co-writer, reveals the secrets of Cohen’s various incarnations—Ali G., Borat, and Bruno. In an excerpt for Vanity Fair, Mazer reveals that about 75 to 80 percent of the characters are scripted before they go into interviews, and they’ve done so much character preparation that there’s a 3,000-page file on Borat. According to Mazer: “Sacha goes to extremes with each character. If he’s playing Borat, he won’t shower the night or two before an interview. It’s an amazing devotion to detail. Even Borat’s underwear is authentic for the character. It has a Russian label on it, so that if Borat strips and somebody catches him, his underwear won’t say “Wal-Mart.”