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Brian May Says Why Freddie Mercury Couldn't Have Been A Movie Star

Brian May Says Why Freddie Mercury Couldn't Have Been A Movie Star

Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody has smashed it at the box office, raking in more then $550 million, despite a budget of just $52 million, since it was released last month.

Audiences have been packing into cinemas across the world to see Rami Malek take on the role of enigmatic singer Freddie Mercury - a role for which he has since seen him receive a nomination for best actor at the upcoming Golden Globes, while the film itself is up for best picture.

But in an interview with Classic Rock, Queen's curyl-haired lead guitarist claims the real Freddie couldn't have continued his career as a rock star as well as pursuing one in film, like other greats have done in the past, such as David Bowie.

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May said: "He was offered a residency in the West End at one point, and he said: 'Yeah, I'll do it. How many shows a week?'.

Rami Malek has been nominated for a Golden Globe for his portrayal of Freddie Mercury. Credit: PA
Rami Malek has been nominated for a Golden Globe for his portrayal of Freddie Mercury. Credit: PA

"They said 'Eight' and he said 'I'll do a couple'. He didn't like repeating stuff.

"Patience was not one of Freddie's virtues."

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Laughing he added: "I think he would have found it difficult turning up every day on the set. I don't think that would have lasted long."

In the candid interview the iconic guitarist/astrophysicist also took a swipe at comedian Sacha Baron Cohen, who was originally in line to play Freddie but eventually decided not to do it with eventually Malek taking his place.

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May says the Borat star would have been a 'disaster' choice to play Freddie Mercury. Credit: PA
May says the Borat star would have been a 'disaster' choice to play Freddie Mercury. Credit: PA

Speaking openly, May says it would have been a 'disaster'.

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He said: "Well, that was a near-disaster. I think we realised just in time what a disaster that was going to be.

"And it actually wasn't rocket science to figure that out. But yeah, that's one of the rocks that we nearly hit."

He added: "I think we all thought it would be difficult. At some points we thought it was impossible. But along came Rami, and we had a great feeling immediately."

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May continued: "I think we were all nervous in the beginning when the casting process was going on.

"Because yes, that's a real tough thing to contemplate - somebody playing the part of you.

"The guy who plays me, Gwilym Lee, I spent a lot of time with him, so he understood me. He'd be picking up my mannerisms and what makes me tick.

"So when Freddie and me are in the studio, confronting each other, it's very real. Some of it was improvised, but they did it with the knowledge that they understood us from the inside out."

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: UK News, TV and Film, UK Entertainment, US Entertainment

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Dominic Smithers

Dominic graduated from the University of Leeds with a degree in French and History. Like you, Dom has often questioned how much use a second language has been. Well, after stints working at the Manchester Evening News, the Accrington Observer and the Macclesfield Express, along with never setting foot in France, he realised the answer is surprisingly little. But I guess, c'est la vie. Contact us at [email protected]