Needless to say, Rudy Giuliani won’t be streaming Borat Subsequent Moviefilm when it hits Amazon Prime Video on Friday (Oct. 23.) In the sequel to the 2006 original, Rudy, 76, interacts with Borat’s teenage daughter, Tutar (who is pretending to be a television reporter) before things get cringey. After Rudy follows Tutar into a hotel room for a “drink,” per The Hollywood Reporter, the former New York City mayor asks her for her phone number. He then lies down on the bed and puts his hand down his pants.
15-year old Tutar is actually 24-year-old Maria Bakalova, who helped Sacha Baron Cohen pull off this prank on Rudy. Giuliani reportedly called the police shortly afterward and realized that he had been Borat’d. “The Borat video is a complete fabrication. I was tucking in my shirt after taking off the recording equipment,” Rudy tweeted as word of the scene went viral online. “At no time before, during, or after the interview was I ever inappropriate. If Sacha Baron Cohen implies otherwise, he is a stone-cold liar. … As soon as I realized it was a set up, I called the police, which has been noted in [The Hollywood Reporter] article on July 8th.”
So, as the world gets ready for Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, here’s what you need to know about the ‘moviefilm’s breakout star.
1. She’s not Irina Nowak. Earlier press releases listed the name of Sacha Baron Cohen’s co-star as “Irina Nowak,” according to Slate. That was likely part of Cohen’s trademark deception, one that blends reality and fiction to make you question what’s really going on. Anyway, it didn’t take long for Internet sleuths to figure out that “Irina” is actually Maria. She’s an actress who apparently is represented by AS ART Production house.
2. She’s Bulgarian. Maria “was born on June 4, 1996, in Burgas, Bulgaria,” reads her IMDB bio. “At the age of six, she started singing and flute lessons. She studied at the National School of Arts in Burgas, majoring in acting for drama theater and a second major in flute. After that, she studied at the National Academy for Theatre and Film Arts in Sofia. In 2019 she successfully graduated.”
3. Maria’s a winner, baby. At the moment, Maria’s acting resume is very scant, but that’s bound to quickly change. She played Valentina in 2019’s The Father, and was “Girl In Taxi” in the 2019 short, Due to Unforeseen Circumstances. However, she’s already won an acting award. Her role as Yana in 2018’s Transgression earned her the Best Actress award at the Alternative Film Festival.
4. She’s an animal lover. In numerous posts on her Instagram page, Maria is seen cuddling cats and dogs. One IG Gallery, posted on #internationalcatday, shows her snuggling a family cat from when he was an itty, bitty, kitty to a majestic ball of fluff.
5. Maria supports Black Lives Matter. On May 31, 2020, Maria posted an IG video/clip that showed the words “Black Lives Matter” over and over again. On June 2, she participated in #BlackOutTuesday by posting a black square to her own Instagram feed.