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'Borat' Getting World Premiere at Toronto Fest

Comedian Sacha Baron Cohen's "Borat," in which he plays an outrageous Kazakhstani reporter, will make its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September, organizers said Tuesday.

The 20th Century Fox comedy, directed by "Seinfeld" alumnus Larry Charles, will screen during the event's Midnight Madness program. It is set for a November theatrical release.

The film follows Cohen's ("Da Ali G Show") Borat Sagdiyev as he travels from his native Kazakhstan to the United States to make a documentary that explains Americans to his country.

The Midnight Madness sidebar also includes world premieres for U.S. director Jonathan Levine's "All the Boys Love Mandy Lane," a horror film about a beautiful high school girl pursued by zombielike admirers; and New Zealand filmmaker Jonathan King's "Black Sheep," a sci-fi horror picture featuring lifelike beasts created by Peter Jackson's Weta effects house.

Also receiving a world premiere is the horror anthology "Trapped Ashes," which features segments from five directors: Joe Dante ("Gremlins"), Ken Russell ("Tommy"), Sean Cunningham ("Friday the 13th"), Monte Hellman ("Two-Lane Blacktop") and effects veteran John Gaeta ("The Matrix").

Additionally, Toronto has booked a world premiere for Spanish director Nacho Cerda's "The Abandoned," a dark thriller about a young woman discovering her mysterious roots in rural Russia, as well as a North American bow for South Korean helmer Bong Joon-ho's "The Host."

On tap for North American premieres are "Severance," a suspense comedy billed as "The Office" meets "Deliverance" from British director Christopher Smith; and Danish director Anders Morgenthaler's "Princess," an animated feature about a missionary-turned-vigilante who must avenge the death of his porn-star sister after an apparent drug overdose.

U.S. filmmaker J.T. Petty's "S&Man," a documentary that explores the sadistic and voyeuristic pleasures typical of horror pictures, is set to receive its international premiere, while Kim Chapiron's "Sheitan," the Vincent Cassel starrer about country-house debauchery from France, will receive a Canadian premiere.

The 31st Toronto International Film Festival, which runs September 7-16, will make additional announcements in the coming weeks.


Etan Vlessing writes for The Hollywood Reporter.

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