Bohemian Rhapsody trailer: Watch the first look at Freddie Mercury biopic
The official trailer for a long-awaited biopic of Freddie Mercury has been released.
Rami Malek, from hit TV show Mr. Robot, plays the charismatic Queen frontman in Bohemian Rhapsody, which is set to hit screens later this year.
In the works since at least 2010, the movie traces the band’s rise to its zenith at Live Aid in 1985 and tells the moving story of Mercury, who died in 1991 aged 45 after contracting AIDS.
Hits including “Another One Bites the Dust,” “Killer Queen,” “We Will Rock You” and, of course, “Bohemian Rhapsody” get an airing in the trailer, released on Tuesday by 20th Century Fox.
The trailer gives little away about the film, but features small gigs in intimate venues as well as massive stadium performances such as Live Aid.
The official synopsis reads: “Bohemian Rhapsody is a foot-stomping celebration of Queen, their music and their extraordinary lead singer Freddie Mercury, who defied stereotypes and shattered convention to become one of the most beloved entertainers on the planet.
“The film traces the meteoric rise of the band through their iconic songs and revolutionary sound, their near-implosion as Mercury’s lifestyle spirals out of control, and their triumphant reunion on the eve of Live Aid, where Mercury, facing a life-threatening illness, leads the band in one of the greatest performances in the history of rock music.”
Work on the film began as long ago as 2010 but has been beset by difficulty. Filming began with the director Bryan Singer, but he was replaced, reportedly over health concerns, by Dexter Fletcher, of Eddie the Eagle fame, in late 2017.
Sacha Baron Cohen, known for his characters Ali G and Borat, was also initially drafted in to play Mercury, but fell out with the band in 2013 over creative differences.
Afterwards, guitarist Brian May labelled the actor an “arse” for telling “untruths” about what happened. At the time, he also said he hoped Ben Whishaw would replace him.
Malek was named in 2016, to the delight of May and Queen drummer Roger Taylor.
Speaking on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Malek told of his nerves at undertaking the project.
Of Queen’s surviving members, he said: “They’re a talented bunch of dudes and I am terrified.”
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He added he was immersing himself in the role “everyday” but added: “It never feels like it’s enough because those guys, each one of them, is this incredible artist on their own. Together, collectively, it is a phenomenon.”
“Bohemian Rhapsody,” the song, is one of Queen’s best known tracks. Released in 1975 on the album A Night at the Opera, the six-minute anthem with no chorus sold millions of copies and remained at number one in the UK singles charts for nine weeks.
The film is set for release in the UK on October 24 and the US on November 2.