Report: Original ‘Bruno’ Ending Played Up Gay-Bashing for Laughs

The upcoming Sacha Baron Cohen epic comedy Bruno has already caused plenty of controversy, but if its original ending had been retained, it would no doubt cause even more.

Movieline reports that the movie at first ended with a scene that seemingly made light of a brutal instance of gay-bashing.

In the current version ready to hit theaters on July 10, Cohen’s Bruno character and his estranged assistant Lutz (Gustaf Hammerstan) reunite, only to draw the ire of a rabid mob in Arkansas when they make out during a cage match. Insults are hurled, as are many projectiles, but by film’s end they manage to escape to domestic bliss with their adopted baby.

Turns out, that ending was a lot rosier than what Cohen and director Larry Charles had initially planned.

According to writer-director Richard Day (Arrested Development), who saw the film at a screening in February, “The cage-match kiss resulted in a violent attack on the couple. They then cut to a press event where they are announcing their marriage or plans to, I forget which. But the boyfriend is now drooling, seemingly brain-damaged, and in a wheelchair, played for laughs.”

Day notes that he and actor James Plotnick raised a stink about the ending after the screening and, though he’s not sure if their protest had anything to do with the altered ending, it was changed to the less potentially offensive version for one reason or another.

“I don’t know if we’re why they changed it but if we are, I regret saying anything,” says Day. “It would have been better to let them expose their true point of view; thanks to us they had a road map of the most egregious offenses and can also claim to have been responsive to our concerns.”

Last month it was reported that several scenes for Bruno had been re-shot or omitted in response to concerns from Hollywood’s gay community.

In addition, for the Los Angeles premiere of the movie, producers hurriedly cut a scene in which Bruno interviews LaToya Jackson about her brother Michael, out of respect for the memory of the recently deceased singer.

If they keep cutting scenes at this rate, how long will Bruno’s running time be?

Let us know in the comments section: Do you think the Bruno crew was right to alter the movie’s original ending?