Freddie Mercury

ITV ARCHIVE

Update: The Wrap has now reported on this story and said that they have their own sources who claim that The Daily Star’s sources are bunk. According to them, producers on the project have yet to even gauge Radcliffe’s interest in taking the role, and the reports that he’s been offered it are, as of now, false. Due to the bushy stache and impressive welcome mat of body hair Sacha Baron Cohen became known for showing off whenever he was playing his Bruno character, there was never really any question as to whether or not he could look the part while playing Freddie Mercury in a biopic of the legendary Queen frontman. Given the fact that he’s best known for playing broadly comedic characters, there was always a question as to whether or not he could play the role in a serious movie and not have it come off like a comedy skit though. Either way, whether or not Cohen is right for the part of Mercury is now a moot point, because creative differences he has with the film’s producers over its script (which is being penned by Frost/Nixon’s Peter Morgan) have forced him to drop out of the project altogether. Reportedly, Cohen felt that some of the other forces helping to steer the project were going too far in glossing over Mercury’s flamboyant lifestyle. According to a report from The Daily Star, the people behind the Mercury biopic have now offered the role to another actor, but he’s […]

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Queen Singer Freddie Mercury

You know that gritty, soul-searching Freddie Mercury biopic starring Sacha Baron Cohen that you wanted? It’s not going to happen. According to Deadline Hollywood, Cohen has left the project due to creative differences with Queen, and while that’s normally code for Any Number Of Other Reasons, it sounds like this time the differences were legitimate. Instead of wanting a real movie that dug into R-rating territory (for an iconic musician whose life was certainly not PG), the band was more interested in the Mickey Mouse version of the story. Cohen also brought in heavy hitters like Peter Morgan, David Fincher and Tom Hooper to work on the film, but the band (who had creative control) wouldn’t approve them. Because they’re the last people you want working on your friend’s life story, right? Without Cohen on board, Hooper is out as well. This is a shame. In a studio situation where it’s hard enough to get mature movies made, even when they are essentially recipes for Oscar gold, it’s doubly difficult to see something brought down by the very people who should have a vested interest in telling the most compelling story possible. The funny/tragic thing is that even if Queen wants a PG-rating for their bandmate’s story, as soon as Mercury kisses a dude, the MPAA will probably slap it with an NC-17 anyway. So even though we all know what the lyrics say, the only question that matters now is whether the show will go on.

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What is Movie News After Dark? This is a question that I am almost never asked, but I will answer it for you anyway. Movie News After Dark is FSR’s newest late-night secretion, a column dedicated to all of the news stories that slip past our daytime editorial staff and make it into my curiously chubby RSS ‘flagged’ box. It will (but is not guaranteed to) include relevant movie news, links to insightful commentary and other film-related shenanigans. I may also throw in a link to something TV-related here or there. It will also serve as my place of record for being both charming and sharp-witted, but most likely I will be neither of the two. I write this shit late at night, what do you expect?

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Every once in a while there’s a bit of innovative casting that fits perfectly. Queen front man Freddie Mercury, the greatest vocalist in rock history (with second place going to Steve Perry from Journey), is finally getting the biopic treatment, and he’ll be played by Sacha Baron Cohen. No word yet on whether he’ll be singing or whether old recordings of Mercury will be in use. Seeing Cohen as Borat, this seems like a strange move. Keeping in mind Cohen’s range (and general appearance), this makes more sense than it should. The project is being produced by GK Films, and they’ve hired Peter Morgan (who wrote The Queen, appropriately enough) to pen the script. [Cinema Blend]

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