Queen guitarist Brian May believes that actor Rami Malek is a shoe-in for the “Best Actor” Academy Award for his portrayal of the band’s late frontman, the iconic Freddie Mercury. According to Best Classic Bands, the blockbuster biopic Bohemian Rhapsody racked up another $13.8 million in North America during its fourth weekend of release — bringing the movie’s grand total to a whopping $152 million. Internationally, the film has scored a massive $472 million.
In an interview with The Press Association, Brian May couldn’t stop singing Malek’s praises, saying, “He’s incredible. . . without a doubt he’ll be on the nominations list for an Oscar and well deserved as well. He inhabited Freddie to the point where we even started to think of him as Freddie. Really remarkable. We’ve lived with this project for nine years and it’s incredible to see it doing so well. It came out to s****y reviews, as some of our work has before, but the public has embraced it magnificently. Everybody gave 200 percent, from the actors and technicians to the production team and hair and make up, everyone.”
Brian May also had time to salute actor Gwilym Lee, who by all accounts nailed the role of May in the film: “You don’t get any lukewarm responses. The guy who plays me should be getting awards all over.”
This past November 24th marked the 27th anniversary of Freddie Mercury’s death from AIDS. Close friend Elton John was among the few allowed to visit Mercury during his final days, and recalled how even until the end showed how much he cared for his friends and family: [“He was sick and he was dying. I used to go around and see him — I was one of the few people to be there and I couldn’t stay there for very long; I’d stay there for about an hour at a time, because I found it was so painful and traumatizing. And he was so brave. He was still spending money and buying things at auction right up to the point that he died — which I thought was hilarious, and the kind of thing I probably would do. But at that Christmas, the Christmas shortly after he had died, I got a present delivered to me in a sheet and I collect Henry Scott Tuke paintings and it was a painting by Henry Scott Tuke from Freddie, saying ‘Dear Sharon (laughs) — hope you love this, love Molina.’ It was. . . I just completely broke down. And to think of me as he was so ill, he wanted to give that to me for Christmas and he died about a month beforehand. And it was quite a choker. That was the kind of person he was.”] SOUNDCUE (:44 OC: . . . person he was)
- 1991’s Innuendo was the last album of new music Queen released during Freddie Mercury‘s lifetime. Mercury died of AIDS on November 24th, 1991 at age 45.
- John Deacon officially retired from music in 1997 — although he is still a voting member and quarter partner in Queen.
- In 2008, Brian May and Roger Taylor, who had been touring with Paul Rodgers as Queen + Paul Rodgers, released the chart bomb, The Cosmos Rocks, before calling it a day as a trio and a recording entity — despite a string of globally sold out concert tours.
- May and Taylor now perform with American Idol star Adam Lambert as their frontman.