Twentieth Century Fox rocked CinemaCon in Las Vegas Thursday with the release of two new photos from the Freddie Mercury/Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody, along with a trailer that has yet to appear online. After working on the film for the past 10 years, producer Graham King is in the final stages of preparing Bohemian Rhapsody for the masses with a look at Queen from 1970 through the operatic rock band’s legendary set at Live Aid in London in 1985.
Even while filming Bohemian Rhapsody still continued to suffer setbacks, including the firing of director Bryan Singer from the production in December. The foundation remained firmly intact, however, with Mr. Robot star Rami Malek starring as Mercury, along with Gwilym Lee (The Tourist) as guitarist Brian May, Ben Hardy (X-Men: Apocalypse) as drummer Roger Taylor, and Joe Mazzello (Jurassic Park) as bassist John Deacon. Eddie the Eagle director Dexter Fletcher was brought aboard to the helm the picture shortly after Singer and 2oth Century Fox parted ways; and apparently the studio seems so confident in the film that it pushed up its release date from Christmas Day to November 2.
According to THR, Fox gave its biggest look at the film yet to theater owners during CinemaCon. This includes the release of a photo of Malek and Lee as Mercury and May, along with a photo of the actors playing the band in a recreation of the Live Aid performance (see below). Further, THR reported the trailer starts with the song “‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ playing in the background as well as vignettes of Mercury and Queen discovering their sound.” The trailer reportedly ends with the band taking stage at Live Aid, featuring the group’s classic anthem “We Are the Champions.”
Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury and Gwilym Lee as Brian May
Gwilym Lee as Brian May, Ben Hardy as Roger Taylor, Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury and Joe Mazzello as John Deacon
THR reported Malek took the stage to present the footage at CinemaCon, noting the pressure that came with Mercury by saying, “When I got this role, I thought, ‘Oh my God, this could be a career-defining performance.’ And then two minutes later I thought, ‘This could be a career killer.’” Apparently Malek has little to worry about, however, relating how he got an email from May after he screened Bohemian Rhapsody, telling the actor that the film brought him to tears and how Mercury would be “proud” of it if he were alive. Mercury died of complications from AIDS in 1991 at age 45.
From all indications, so far, it looks like Queen fans are in for something spectacular with Bohemian Rhapsody when it hits theaters in late fall, especially since Fox’s confidence to move up the release date speaks volumes. Perhaps most exciting is that Malek not only looks like Mercury, the release of an early set video showed how he nailed the late singer’s mannerisms as well. The moment of truth, however, will come when audiences get to judge how good Malek sounds as Mercury, since the film reportedly will feature a combination of the actor’s voice, recordings of Mercury, and fill-ins of soundalikes.
KEY RELEASE DATES
Bohemian Rhapsody release date: Nov 2, 2018