After leading one of the best bands in rock history and dying a tragic death due to AIDS complications, a movie about the life of Queen front man Freddie Mercury has a lot of great material to work with, and Deadline (via CinemaBlend) has the news that such a project is moving forward. What’s the most exciting thing about this by far is that he’ll be portrayed by Sacha Baron Cohen, best known for Borat and Bruno, along with roles in films like Sweeney Todd and Talladega Nights, among others.
The production will be handled by GK Films, Tribeca Productions, and Queen Films, and the film will focus on the formation of the band and end at their performance for Live Aid in 1985, considered by some to be one of the greatest live performances in the history of rock music. The script is being handled by Peter Morgan, best known for his work on Frost/Nixon and The Queen, the latter of which earned him an Academy Award nomination. The band’s songs, including Bohemian Rhapsody, We Will Rock You, We Are The Champions, and You’re My Best Friend will be used in the movie, but it hasn’t been specified whether or not they’ll just dub the songs over the scenes requiring singing.
I think that casting Cohen in the role of Freddie Mercury is sort of a brilliant idea. Both because there’s a very noticeable resemblance between the two and that he’s shown dramatic depth in some of this previous roles, such as Sweeney Todd (he was the best thing in an otherwise poor film). As stated above, there’s a lot to be done with his story, and if they can get the music right, then this film will already have a lot going for it.
What do you think of Cohen portraying Mercury?