When it was revealed that actor Sacha Baron Cohen would take on the role of Freddie Mercury in the upcoming biopic about the late Queen frontman, it seemed like a good choice. But it didn’t take long before Baron Cohen was stepping away from the project for seemingly unknown reasons.
And despite a recent rumor that the Borat star was returning to the project, English actor Ben Winshaw (Skyfall, Cloud Atlas) is reportedly attached to the role.
But Queen drummer Roger Taylor finally shed some light on Baron Cohen’s departure from the project, when speaking with Britain’s The Independent.
“In the end, we felt that Sacha, brilliant, subversive comedian though he is, wasn’t really at heart an actor,” explained Taylor. “We didn’t want to make it funny. We wanted a brilliant actor who was going to move people in both directions, to tears and laughter and joy. We didn’t really feel in the end that he was right. We wanted an amazingly good actor in the purest sense.”
At this time, there is still no indication as to when the film will be completed, or even start filming, but don’t hold your breath. “Brian [May] and I are in absolutely no rush,” Taylor insisted. “We’re not bothered. We just want it to be right.”