The long delayed Queen biopic, now titled Bohemian Rhapsody, is finally back on track. Queen members Brian May and Roger Taylor are on board as the film’s executive producers and musical supervisors, personally choosing Bryan Singer (X-Men franchise, Apt Pupil) to direct the film due to his “extraordinary imagination and style.”
Now, we finally have the first look at who will portray the enigmatic, flamboyant singer Freddie Mercury: Mr. Robot‘s Rami Malek. The above photo (courtesy of EW) shows Malek nailing Mercury’s flair, including that trademark mustache. The photo was released on what would’ve been Mercury’s 71st birthday.
The Queen biopic has been stuck in development hell for over a decade. Sacha Baren Cohen was originally slated to play Mercury, but later backed out after clashing with the original band members who wanted to take a more PG approach rather than focus on the darker sides of Mercury’s life and struggles. Since then, other versions tried to get off the ground, but none were made official until Malek and Singer stepped up to the plate.
Bohemian will cover Queen’s career from 1970, when Mercury initially got together with May and Taylor, and will continue through the band’s performance at Live Aid in 1985, six years before Mercury’s death. Production will begin this fall with a release date targeted for December 25th, 2018.