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10 December 2021, 11:19
There's evidently no love lost between Queen drummer Roger Taylor and Sacha Baron Cohen.
After details of the film were initially revealed in 2010, it was revealed that Cohen was cast to bring the life of the flamboyant rock star to the big screen.
Three years later however, he walked away from the project claiming that Queen members Brian May and Roger Taylor disagreed with his vision for a “warts ‘n’ all" portrayal of Freddie, wanting “to protect their legacy as a band".
In a recent review with Classic Rock magazine, it seems that Roger has absolutely no regrets about the direction Bohemian Rhapsody went instead.
In fact, he said that Sacha Baron Cohen "would have been utter shit” playing Freddie.
Taylor claims that Cohen "didn’t take Freddie seriously enough” and the remaining Queen members, who also served as consultants, wanted to honour their dear friend with a faithful account of his life and work.
“Everything resulting from the film was just so positive. It was fantastic." said Taylor.
As we now know, Bohemian Rhapsody went on to become a huge success when it emerged in 2018, winning four Oscars and breaking box office records worldwide, earning close to one billion dollars.
But the Queen drummer wasn't so effusive how the film would've turned out if Cohen was still in the lead role.
"I think he would have been utter shit. Sacha is pushy, if nothing else. He’s also six inches too tall."
Despite his candour, Taylor wasn't just out to pour scorn on Cohen, revealing he's still a huge admirer of Cohen's comedy. Just not his acting.
"I watched his last five films and came to the conclusion he’s not a very good actor… I thought he was an utterly brilliant subversive comedian, that’s what he’s great at."
"I think Rami did a brilliant job in an almost impossible role." gushed Roger.
"We kind of got it right in the end. We wanted to take people on a journey, make them feel up and then down, then joyous at the end.”
We couldn't agree more Roger. Given Bohemian Rhapsody's success, both critically and commercially, a sequel also appears to be in the works according to Queen guitarist Brian May.
"We are thinking maybe it could happen but it would have to be a great script. It’s going to take a while to figure that out."