When Sasha Baron Cohen (aka Borat) makes an appearance, or, more specifically, when one of his zany alter egos makes an appearance, hilarity and bedlam are never far behind. Fashion weeks in Milan and Paris got a blast of his outrageousness in the form of his flamboyantly camp Austrian television reporter persona, Bruno. From leaping onto the runway of Spanish designer Agatha Ruiz de la Prada during the show (word has it that Agatha is thinking lawsuit) to creating pandemonium backstage at Italian label Iceberg, he moved on to Paris, where he showed up in the second row of Stella McCartney. Whether a tacit truce had been called or there was simply a display of mutual respect, Bruno held onto both his second-row seat and minded his manners. He did applaud a bit too loudly (by insider standards) and spent most of his time fixing his hair rather than watching the action on the catwalk. “I don’t know who you’re talking about,” McCartney protested, with a twinkle in her eye when asked backstage about Bruno’s presence, adding mysteriously: “I love his work in fashion.”

This story first appeared in the October 27, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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