What better way to see how well Rami Malek deserved his recent Emmy win by giving him a chance to play a character the exact opposite of the near-sociopathic one he played in Mr. Robot.
Bryan Singer, the director who made a huge name for himself with the X-Men films, wants to helm the movie chronicling the rise of the rock band Queen, and he’s eyeing Malek to play its flamboyant frontman, Freddie Mercury.
The film is called Bohemian Rhapsody, according to Deadline, after one of the band’s most famous songs released on Halloween 1975. It’s the latest step for Oscar-winning producer Graham King, the man behind such critical hits as The Aviator, The Departed and Hugo.
King has brought in Twentieth Century Fox and New Regency to help him get the film going after an eight-year struggle to get it done, and will now focus more on Mercury, the singer and songwriter who founded Queen in 1970, and led the band until his death from AIDS-related complications in 1991. Malek, who won his Emmy for playing Elliot Alderson in the tech-driven USA network series, would take on the artist who media and fans were never really able to quite fully figure out.
The most recent screenplay for the film was crafted by Anthony McCarten, according to Deadline. McCarten earned two Oscar nominations for his 2014 film The Theory of Everything, which chronicled the life of another famous figure, physicist Stephen Hawking.
McCarten’s most recent work, Darkest Hour, is currently in front of cameras. It stars Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill, chronicling his leadership against Nazi Germany during the early days of World War II.
King also has been busy. He has two films completed – the horror film Delirium with Topher Grace and Patricia Clarkson, and the historical drama Allied with Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard.
Malek already finished the second season of Mr. Robot for USA, and is now filming a remake of the 1973 film Papillon. Written by Aaron Guzikowski based on the Henri Charriere book, the story centers on a prisoner kept on a remote island, who works to plot his escape.
Finally, Singer has been busy as both a producer and a director. Besides Bohemian Rhapsody, he’s also set to helm 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, which currently is in pre-production, but yet to cast anyone. He also is an executive producer on three television series planned next year – the FX series Legion based on the Marvel comic, the first live-action X-Men television series potentially for Fox, and a World War III television series, potentially for Spike TV.
A Freddie Mercury film has been attempted a few times in recent years, Deadline said. An early attempt was with comic improv actor Sacha Baron Cohen playing the singer based on a script from Peter Morgan, the creator of the new Netflix series The Crown.
No timetable has been released for Bohemian Rhapsody, but it’s expected to go in front of the cameras next year.
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