Sacha Baron Cohen was told not to present an award as Ali G by Oscars bosses.
But the 44-year-old did it anyway – with the help of his mischievous wife Isla Fisher.
Speaking to ITV’s This Morning, Sacha said: “The truth is we actually had to sneak it in because the Oscars sat me down before and said they didn’t want me to do anything out of order.
Sacha Baron Cohen representing the Staines Massive at last night’s Oscars alongside Olivia Wilde. Picture: REX Features
“They wanted me to actually present it as myself. But luckily my wife put on the Ali G beard in the disabled toilets so we managed to get away with it.”
Sacha also confessed he was nervous about some of the more close to the knuckle gags he had in mind, so ran his act via awards host Chris Rock first.
He added: “I mean there were a few moments I was a bit worried how they’d react to the first gag, but I bumped into Chris Rock actually on the way on and pitched him the gag and he gave me the thumbs up so I went for it.”
Sacha made co-presenter Olivia giggle before they went on stage, and below, Amy documentary makers James Gay-Rees and Asif Kapadia show their appreciation for the comic. Pictures: REX Features
In a reference to the Oscars diversity furore, Sacha’s first joke as Ali G was to joke there should be an Oscar for the “very hard-working little yellow people,” before adding he was talking about cartoon characters the Minions.
In his Staines twang he added on stage beside co-presenter Olivia Wilde: “Ow come there’s no Oscar for dem very hard-working little yellow people with tiny dongs? You know, the Minions.’
He was introducing best picture nominee Room with Olivia when he also said: “I is here representing all of them that’s been overlooked: Will Smith, Idris Elbow, and of course that amazing black bloke from Star Wars… Darth Vader.”
Sacha and Isla arrive at the 88th Academy Awards. Picture: Getty Images
Smith and his wife Jada Pinkett boycotted the show weeks ago along with Malcolm X director Spike Lee in protest the 2016 Oscars featured zero black nominees.
While Sacha has previously insisted Ali G is a parody of how privileged Britons view black people, critics have said the humour simply capitalises on negative black stereotypes.
Sacha wrapped up his Ali G presenting stint by telling Olivia Wilde on stage: “You are well fit,” and she was heard saying: “Thankyou” before clips of the nominees’ work were played.