Sacha Baron Cohen will produce, direct, write and star in a biopic about the late Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury. At least that is what the band’s manager Jim Beach has said.
At the Artist & Management Awards on Thursday Beach said, “You have probably followed the saga of the famous Queen-Freddie Mercury biopic which has been developing in Hollywood for the last seven years. An important breakthrough is that we have now managed to persuade Sacha Baron Cohen to write, produce and direct this movie, and he has also agreed to star.”
Cohen had previously been set to do the project, but dropped out over differences of opinion with the surviving members of Queen over how Mercury should be portrayed.
One of those members, Brian May, has dismissed Beach’s comments as nothing but a joke saying on his website, “a small joke that Jim threw in during his acceptance speech. He said that, in response to enquiries about the progress on the Freddie feature film, that Sacha Baron Cohen had been re-engaged to write, produce, and direct the film, as well as starring in all four major roles! I’m afraid some folks might have taken it seriously!”
Mercury died of AIDS in 1991 at the age of 45.
Cohen’s next film, his first in three years, will be next year’s “Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass.”