When Rami Malek was announced as winner for Best Actor at the Academy Awards last night, I braced myself to cringe because I knew Freddie Mercury was not done meddling in the earthly affairs of Bohemian Rhapsody just yet. You see, throughout the evening, Freddie kept floating up to Rami and tweaking his little bow-tie so that it was never straight. However, I wasn’t expecting Freddie to push him off stage at the end of the show! But it’s the most logical explanation for Rami’s taking a big enough tumble to require paramedic assistance and miss getting his picture taken backstage with his fellow winners for acting, Regina King, Mahershala Ali, and Olivia Colman. Rami is fine, but his Bohemian Rhapsody journey has been wild as hell from beginning to end.
Rami Malek is up for an Oscar for his portrayal of Queen’s Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody. Throwing a bit of a pall over the Oscar-nominated proceedings for Rami is the recent expose in The Atlantic about the allegations of underage boy rape against director Bryan Singer. Rami’s not a dummy and he knows if he’s going to get that golden phallic symbol, he’s going to have to make sure the Academy and the public know that he won’t be lining up to see Red Sonja on opening night. He put that out there during his appearance at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival on Friday.
When Bohemian Rhapsody won a slew of awards at the Golden Globes on Sunday, most everyone was shocked – including the Hollywood Foreign Press Association based on where they made Rami Malek & Co. sit in that room! Anyway, Rami had already scooped the award for Best Actor in a Drama and was back stage when the whole movie won for Best Picture. Nicole Kidman was the presenter, and when Rami joined the rest of the movie team on stage, he went to say “hai, gurl” to Nic. Alas, she was about as warm to him as she likely would be if Leah Remini and an A&E film crew showed up at her front door. Rami now says he wasn’t mad about it in the least and they “have something planned.” Did anyone really care that much?
After Bohemian Rhapsody’s big win for Best Drama at the Golden Globes last night, I braced myself when the squad got up there to accept the award because the specter of its erstwhile director, accused rapist Bryan Singer, hung heavy in the air even though he was conspicuously absent. It looked like things might get a little awkward up there on stage. Also, Brian May’s poodle doo fills me with existential dread. And I was right to be nervous. Judging from last night’s broadcast, you’d think BR directed itself because Bryan’s name was not mentioned once. That didn’t stop Bryan from finding a way to take the credit for the film’s win. Over the past few months, he’s filled his Instagram with behind the scenes footage and outtakes from the set. And last night, he really outdid himself with a self-congratulatory post about BR’s win.
Since I’ve been writing about Bohemian Rhapsody for over a year now, I felt that I at least owed it and Freddie, a single viewing to make sure my skepticism and side-eye were warranted. And so over the weekend I bought a ticket to A Star Is Born because it was starting at the same time and saw it (no way was I giving Bryan or Fox a dime of my marginally well earned money). Yet it seems I was the only one who did that, because the box office receipts are in and plenty of people threw their movie going dollars at BR over the weekend. According to Deadline, despite lukewarm reviews from critics, BH earned $13.4 million dollars on Sunday alone! That’s a lot of people attending the Church Of Mercury.
I hate to walk this back, but I’m beginning to think The Curse Of Freddie Mercury may be a fallacy and the problems with the Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody are entirely the fault of Bryan Singer, and Bryan Singer alone. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Bryan was skating on thin ice before a single frame was shot. Several Fox executives and producers are speaking out about why Bryan got hired despite his reputation for tempestuous and unprofessional behavior, and why nobody was surprised when he was fired for the same.