Fox has fired director Bryan Singer from the Queen biopic, Bohemian Rhapsody. The firing comes when production was halted last week due to the director’s absence following Thanksgiving break. Fox has now come to a decision to fire Singer with only two weeks left to go in principle photography.
“Bryan Singer is no longer the director of Bohemian Rhapsody,” said the studio in an official statement.
The Hollywood Reporter has reported Singer’s firing was in part, due to a confrontation between himself and actor Rami Malek, portraying the famed Queen front man Freddie Mercury. Singer says the two have patched things up in a statement from the fired director.
Singer also responded by saying, “With fewer than three weeks to shoot remaining, I asked Fox for some time off so I could return to the U.S. to deal with pressing health matters concerning one of my parents. This was a very taxing experience, which ultimately took a serious toll on my own health. Unfortunately, the studio was unwilling to accommodate me and terminated my services. This was not my decision and it was beyond my control.”
The film is said to have been a celebration of the band and not just an exploration of Mercury’s past. “It won’t just be the dark Freddie story, but that being said, that also will be honored,” said Singer in an interview with Entertainment Weekly.
The Queen biopic has had its fair share of troubles over the years. Sasha Baron Cohen was first attached to play Mercury back in 2010 but left due to “creative differences” in 2013. Ben Whishaw later went on to replace Cohen, however that project would go on to fall apart as well. In 2016, Singer, best known for his X-Men films, was set to direct with Malek and production finally got off the ground.
The studio is said to be looking for a replacement director on the film to finish the final two weeks of shooting. Singer could still earn directing credit because of DGA rules, but that depends on how much of his work remains in the finished product. Bohemian Rhapsody is still due out on December 25th of next year.