The Kazakhstan tourism board launched a new campaign this week by borrowing Borat's slogan: “Very nice!”
The catchphrase may sound familiar because it was made famous by fictional Kazakh reporter, Borat Sadivyev, in a 2006 satirical mockumentary: “Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan."
Or, simply, “Borat.”
The campaign features four promotional videos that show tourists sampling Kazakhstan's local food, bustling markets, scenic views, and stunning landscapes while music plays in the background. Capping the videos are tourists exclaiming variations of "Wow, very nice!"
“The slogan offers the perfect description of Kazakhstan's vast tourism potential in a short, memorable way,” said Kairat Sadvakassov, deputy chairman of Kazakh Tourism in a statement. “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.”
Entertainer Sacha Baron Cohen's feature film revolved around outrageous situations that occur when Borat, a fake Kazakhstan reporter, comes to the United States to film a documentary on what makes America great.
The movie is filled with cringe-worthy pranks, including Borat welcoming viewers to his home country by introducing them to "the town rapist" and "the No. 4 prostitute in all of Kazakhstan, his sister.
It caused outrage and controversy when it was released and later banned, in Kazakhstan, according to CNN.
“Viewers and authorities, condemned the film’s portrayal, saying it was full of offensive stereotypes and behaviors by the titular character," the network reported at the time.
Despite that, Cohen's film was a hit and won several awards.
Fast forward to 2020 and Borat is back at it again.
On Oct. 23, the sequel: “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan,” was released on Amazon Prime Video.
After hearing of the Borat sequel, the tourism board put together their campaign and videos to coincide with the movie's release that is intended to show fans of the 'Borat Subsequent Moviefilm' and why they should visit this incredible country,” according to a statement.
Dennis Keen, an American living in Kazakhstan, came up with the idea of using Borat's catch-phrase, reported CNN. Since the global coronavirus pandemic, the country has seen a drastic decline in tourism. It is hoped the new campaign will attract visitors like it did when the first Borat film came out. According to the news release, as much as authorities condemned it, tourism in Kazakhstan took off.
"We would like everyone to come to 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, ” Sadvakassov said in the release.