Sacha Baron Cohen ‘quits Freddie Mercury biopic over creative differences with Queen’

Queen apparently want it to be a PG affair, while Baron Cohen is keen to take a grittier approach

Sacha Baron Cohen has reportedly quit the forthcoming biopic of Freddie Mercury over creative differences with Queen.

The Borat star has been attached to star as Mercury since September 2010, but Deadline reports that he’s now pulled out of the project because he and Queen, who have script and director approval, can’t agree on the type of movie they want to make.

The band apparently want the biopic to be a PG affair, while the actor is keen to delve into the grittier, more adult aspects of Mercury’s famously hedonistic lifestyle.


Back in March (2013), it was reported that The King’s Speech director Tom Hooper, who recently worked with Baron Cohen on Les Misérables, was eyeing the project. However, Deadline says that Queen failed to approve him and also turned down Peter Morgan, the Oscar-nominated screenwriter behind The Queen and Frost/Nixon. Morgan’s script, it was reported in March, would begin with the formation of Queen in the early ’70s and end with their legendary 1985 Live Aid set.

Last summer, Katy Perry was linked to the role of Mary Austin, Mercury’s close friend and former girlfriend, but the singer quickly dismissed these rumours.