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March 14, 2014

Director Dexter Fletcher leaves Freddie Mercury biopic due to creative differences

His vision for the film reportedly clashed with producer Graham King

Director Dexter Fletcher leaves Freddie Mercury biopic due to creative differences

Director Dexter Fletcher has reportedly quit the forthcoming Freddie Mercury biopic.

Deadline says that filmmaker Fletcher, who made his directorial debut with 2012's Wild Bill and also helmed last year's Proclaimers-inspired musical Sunshine On Leith, has backed out of the project due to creative differences. His vision for the film reportedly clashed with that of producer Graham King.

Borat actor Sacha Baron Cohen was originally slated to play Mercury in the biopic of the late Queen singer's life, but he also pulled out of the project because, according to reports, he and the band were unable to agree on the type of movie they wanted to make.

He was subsequently replaced by Skyfall actor Ben Whishaw. Speaking about Cohen's departure, Queen guitarist Brian May said: "You have to really suspend that disbelief – the man who plays Freddie, you have to really believe is Freddie. And we didn't think that could really happen with Sacha. That's not any criticism of his talent whatsoever, it's just a feeling that it was not going to work – that the pieces didn't fit together anymore."

Filming on Mercury is scheduled to begin this summer. A script has been written by screenwriter Peter Morgan, who has previously worked on films including The Queen and Frost/Nixon.

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