Jones was one of the sequel’s breakout stars and quickly became a fan favorite after appearing as a “babysitter” hired to watch Borat’s 15-year-old daughter – played by the 24-year-old Bulgarian actress Maria Bakalova.
While filming, Jones was reportedly told she would be appearing in a documentary about child brides and that the film would largely only be seen overseas.
Pastor Derrick Scobey, of Jones’ Ebenezer Baptist Church, previously set up a GoFundMe crowdfunding page in her honor, as she was told she’d be playing a “‘Black Grandmother’ in a ‘documentary’”.
“Jeanise emerged as that person and she was completely unaware that this was a comedy, and all of this was made up,” reads a statement on the page. “The joke is on us/Jeanise and that’s no problem.”
It adds that Jones “wasn’t paid much money” for the film and she was worried about the fate of Bakalova’s Tutor for the duration of filming.
When WENN went to press, the fundraiser had already amassed over $140,000 and, outside of the online platform, Cohen also donated $100,000 in Jones’ honor.
Scobey told People: “I was blown away but not surprised because I was told about what type of heart this man has. Maybe it’s a little risque, some of the things in the movie, but he has a good heart.”
“While all these people around the world are loving how she’s the moral compass of the movie, she’s sitting here serving people in the dark and in the cold,” he added of Jones. “This is who we are. This is what we do for our community, and we love our community.”
Borat Subsequent Moviefilm is currently screening on Amazon Prime Video.