Bohemian Rhapsody originally had James Bond star as Freddie Mercury in ‘different’ story | Films | Entertainment
After years in the making, Bohemian Rhapsody was a huge hit, taking over $900 million at the global box office and winning more Oscars than any other film in 2019. But before Rami Malek went on to pick up his Best Actor gong, there were other stars attached to playing Freddie Mercury before him. At one point, Sacha Baron Cohen was set for the role, but there was a James Bond star too.
Speaking on Brett Goldstein’s Films To Be Buried With podcast, Dexter Fletcher spoke of being parachuted in to finish the final weeks of shooting on Bohemian Rhapsody after director Bryan Singer was fired for going AWOL on set.
At the time, the British actor and filmmaker had been prepping for Elton John biopic Rocketman, so he was a perfect choice to complete the film. Although, it turns out he’d been the original director of the Queen biopic in the first place.
From Day 1, Fletcher made sure everybody was on set at 8am, every morning. He said: “It sort of shocked everyone into ‘Right okay, this guy’s come in and he’s full of energy and determination.’ I sort of attacked it like that. And there was a lot of love for the project on there. All those people were really invested in it and they wanted it to be great. It’s not just a job…you’ve got to invest so much of yourself. So I just kind of exploited that in the best possible way!”