QUEEN Drummer Says SACHA BARON COHEN ‘Didn’t Take FREDDIE MERCURY Seriously Enough’

Wednesday, 24 October 2018
Brian May has praised Rami Malek for his work in QUEEN biopic "Bohemian Rhapsody". The "Mr. Robot" actor stars in the film as QUEEN lead singer Freddie Mercury, the iconic British vocal artist known for his extravagant performance style and his incredible vocal range. Malek reportedly brilliantly channels Mercury, right down to the pitch-perfect lip syncing he does to the actual vocals by the flamboyant superstar lead singer of the iconic band. Speaking to the Associated Press at last night's (Tuesday, October 23) "Bohemian Rhapsody" world premiere at The SSE Arena, Wembley in London, England, the QUEEN guitarist said about Malek (see video below): "He's amazing. Thank God we found him. He's just an incredible guy — in every way. He's lovely to be around, he's dedicated utterly, and he's incredibly talented. My God! He got Freddie to a tee. I mean, he's wonderful. We couldn't have done better." Sacha Baron Cohen and Ben Whishaw were set to play Mercury at different stages in the movie's development, prior to Malek's casting. Cohen's vision for the film was reportedly very "adult" in tone and clashed with what the surviving members of QUEEN had in mind, leading to the actor's departure. Drummer Roger Taylor told the Associated Press: "There was a lot of talk about Sacha and stuff. It was never really on. I don't think he took it seriously enough — didn't take Freddie seriously enough. But I think, really, it's a long road, but we're at the end of it now." When Cohen quit the project in 2013, Deadline reported that the reason for his exit was the fact "that the band wanted to make more of a PG movie about QUEEN while Cohen was counting on a gritty R-rated tell-all centered around the gifted gay singer." Due in theaters on November 2, "Bohemian Rhapsody" began production with "X-Men" director Bryan Singer behind the camera, but the filmmaker was fired from the movie after he disappeared from set and caused production delays. Dexter Fletcher, best known for making "Eddie the Eagle", stepped in to replace Singer in the director's chair.

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