Dictator of Wadiya denounces the Academy, praises Billy Crystal

The stodgy old (and white) Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences banned comedian Sacha Baron Cohen from showing up at Sunday's Oscars dressed as Adm. Gen. Shabazz Aladeen, the main character of his new movie "The Dictator." Cohen, who is also in the Oscar-venerated "Hugo," is still allowed to show up as himself, but AMPAS prez Tom Sherak told the LA Times that Baron showing up in character was "a bad thing to do." The General released the above video to Deadline.com, and appeared on "The Today Show" this morning to denounce the decision. 

This is why the Academy Awards telecast is so hair-tearingly boring, and this is coming from someone who watches every single second, down to the last make-up artist thanked. A loose cannon, such as a blood-thirsty dictator, would liven up the proceedings. 

No matter what you think about the Oscars, we've got you covered at Philly.com, with parties, predictions and live material on Sunday night courtesy of Ellen Gray, Carrie Rickey, Howard Gensler and oh so many more. 

We leave you with just one thought: "Death to the West! Death to America! And good luck Billy Crystals. You’re fantastic!"

"The Dictator" hits theaters May 11, 2012.

UPDATE: He's in!