By Caroline Briggs
Entertainment reporter, BBC News
A cart laden with fermented horse urine rolling into London's West End could only mean one thing.
Borat's film was screened as part of the London Film Festival
Borat - the spoof reporter from Kazakhstan - had trundled into town for the UK premiere of his new film Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
And those who braved the rain to watch the spectacle had little choice but to watch in wonder.
Kazakh music and beating drums escorted Borat - aka Ali G comedian Sacha Baron Cohen - and his 30-strong entourage on the rain-soaked red-carpet.
But there was little red-carpet glitz among the austere-faced peasant women, scantily-clad prostitutes, and grubby children who clustered around his cart.
Stern officials carrying crossbows watched as Borat urged increasingly the bemused crowd to sing the fictional national anthem O Kazakhstan.
"Kazakhstan greatest country in the world, All other countries are run by little girls," he warbled at those huddled under umbrellas.
Other choice lyrics included "we invented toffee and the trouser press" and "they are nosey people with bone in their brains".
Clutching a tacky Union jack umbrella, Borat and his entourage then swept along the lines of gathered press, kissing one unsuspecting TV reporter passionately on the lips.
'English women very nice'
Borat, who has been criticised for his portrayal of Kazakhstan as a nation of misogynists, racists and anti-Semites, was keen put the record straight.
"In my country we are as civilised as anywhere else," he explained, chopping his hand wildly in the air for emphasis.
"Women are now permitted to travel on inside of bus, homosexuals no longer have to wear blue hats and the age of consent has been raised to 12 years old."
Asked how English women compared to women from the former Soviet Republic, Borat said: "English women are very nice. I must say, I do not know for sure because I have not have time to buy any.
Borat's entourage were people from his Kazakh village
"But the ones I have seen are very different to Kazakhstan women.
"Here they have more hair on their heads than on their backs but they do not look strong enough to pull a plough or punch a horse to sleep."
He added that he was looking forward to exploring the UK: "I would very much like to meet Queen - not for sexy time,
merely for respect - and also very much the children Prince Charlie."
Real-life Kazakh TV star Jantemir Baimukhamedov - also known at Jantik - arrived at the premiere to give his "brother" Borat some "horse-meat sausages" from home.
He arrived on the red-carpet in a black fur hat and full Kazakh national costume, flanked by Borat's "mother and relative", who were wearing equally eye-catching clothes.
But they were quickly and politely escorted away by officials when it transpired they did not have a ticket.
Borat said he did not meet Mr Baimukhamedov, adding: "But I did bring my 11-year-old son Bilak here with his wife who is a similar age.
Baron Cohen's girlfriend Isla Fisher attended the premiere
"They have recently given born to a baby which we are hoping to sell to singing transvestite Madonna," referring to the singer's recent adoption of a 13-month-old Malawian baby.
Mr Baimukhamedov, one of Kazakhstan's most popular TV entertainers, had flown in specially from Kazakhstan for the premiere.
He insisted the Kazakh people had a sense of humour about the spoof reporter.
"We came to see my brother Borat. We want to invite him back home because it's very good in my country.
"Some people do not understand that sense of humour, but of course they understand that he is a showman.
"I think this movie is going to Kazakhstan after Britain and the people can't wait because they really, really love this person.
"The people of Kazakhstan love Borat. It is very good for tourism."