Last month the movie world got all excited as a certain Brian May said: “Freddie is in so many ways very much alive. He must be wryly smiling somewhere!!!”
So what was it all about? Well, at long last it had been confirmed that a biopic of legendary Queen frontman Freddie Mercury was all systems go, charting his early years and ending with the epic 1985 Live Aid concert.
The news made this particular Rooblaer almost quiver with anticipation. Like all Queen fans, I’ve heard so much in the way of rumours and speculation over the years without anything concrete. But now it’s finally time to raise a glass of Moet & Chandon – the show must go on, darling!
This year marks the tenth anniversary of We Will Rock You, the hit musical based on the songs of Queen. Robert DeNiro’s TriBeCa Productions financed the success story and the company will also be involved in this latest venture, co-producing the project. It is still in the developmental stage, with May and Roger Taylor on hand for technical advice. However, filming is due to start around Eastertide next year, with the picture due to be released in early 2014.
Now for the really big deal: the part of the great man himself. When rumours were flying around a few years back, I remember that many were tipping Johnny Depp for the role. After all, he’s got the look, the presence and had already shown that he could A. sing (think Sweeney Todd) and B. pull off the whole camp English thing (take your pick).
Fast-forward to 2012 and it turns out that the man who brought us Borat and Ali G, Sacha Baron Cohen, has been lined-up for the gig. A surprise choice you might think, but if we look at his CV he has proved he can sing and act rather well (again in Sweeney Todd). Couple this with his dark, exotic looks and undoubted charisma, along with a natural ability to camp it up, and he looks ideal to capture the essence of the rock legend on the big screen.
All of this will now hopefully unfold for our viewing pleasure in less than two years time. A kind of magic it certainly promises to be.