An on-again, off-again Freddie Mercury biopic starring Sacha Baron Cohen appears to be on again. Last year, it was reported that Cohen had left the project due to disagreements with the surviving members of Queen over the film’s direction and tone. Now, though, Queen manager Jim Beach has revealed that Cohen is back on board with the project, and not only will he depict the legendary singer, he’s also writing and directing the film himself.
Update – March 29th: According to Queen guitarist Brian May, Beach was merely joking about Cohen’s participation in the biopic.
“You have probably followed the saga of the famous Queen-Freddie Mercury biopic which has been developing in Hollywood for the last seven years,” Beach said during a speech at the Artist and Manager Awards this week. “An important breakthrough is that we have now managed to persuade Sacha Baron Cohen to write, produce and direct this movie, and he has also agreed to star.”
Beach did not discuss a timetable for the project. However, according to IMDB, Cohen has nothing scheduled once he’s done filming a new comedy called Grimsby, so presumably production could begin as soon as this year.