Star of Skyfall and The Hour replaces Sacha Baron Cohen.
British actor Ben Whishaw has been confirmed to play Freddie Mercury in the forthcoming Queen biopic.
Whishaw, who’s best known for his role as James Bond’s gadget guru Q in last year’s Skyfall, has been rumoured for the role since Borat actor Sacha Baron Cohen was dropped from the film earlier this year.
The biopic will tell the story of Queen from the band’s early days to their headline performance at Live Aid in 1985. In the director’s chair is Dexter Fletcher, the Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels actor who made his directorial debut in 2011 with Wild Bill before directing Sunshine On Leith, a musical based on the songs of The Proclaimers.
Queen guitarist Brian May commented on the departure of Baron Cohen earlier this year, explaining that his presence in the movie would have been “very distracting.”
“We thought there has to be no distraction in the Freddie movie,” he told Classic Rock. “You have to really suspend that disbelief – the man who plays Freddie, you have to really believe is Freddie. And we didn’t that could really happen with Sacha.”
Meanwhile, Queen’s Roger Taylor recently revealed that the fruits of Freddie Mercury and Michael Jackson’s 1983 recording session will soon see an official release. [via NME]