Queen guitarist Brian May thinks Rami Malek’s performance as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody is worthy of an Oscar nomination

By Dave Quinn
November 23, 2018 10:46 AM

Rami Malek‘s performance as the late Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody has the approval of Queen’s legendary guitarist Brian May.

In an interview with the Press Association, May praised the Mr. Robot star’s transformation into the fiery frontman, saying “without doubt he’ll be on the nominations for an Oscar, and well deserved as well.”

‘He’s incredible,” May, 71, said. “He inhabited Freddie to the point where we even started to think of him as Freddie. Really remarkable.”

'Bohemian Rhapsody' film premiere, Arrivals, New York, USA - 30 Oct 2018
Brian May and Rami Malek
| Credit: Stephen Lovekin/Variety/Shutterstock

May served as a musical and creative consultant on Bohemian Rhapsody, which tells the story of Queen’s rise to fame through their eyes — good times and bad times in all.

The film received mostly mixed reviews, though just three weeks after its release it is already the second-highest-grossing music biopic domestically of all time.

“We’ve lived with this project for nine years and it’s incredible to see it doing so well. It came out to s—– reviews, as some of our work has before, but the public has embraced it magnificently,” May told the Press Association. “Everybody gave 200 percent, from the actors and technicians to the production team and hair and make-up, everyone. You don’t get any lukewarm responses. The guy who plays me [actor Gwilym Lee] should be getting awards all over.”

Freddie Mercury and Rami Malek
| Credit: Phil Dent/Redferns; Alex Bailey/Twentieth Century Fox

Malek previously told PEOPLE that he had “no hesitation” when he was offered the role of Mercury.

“It was all in,” he said. “It was just after that where the weight of it all hit. I felt the only way to not have the pitfall of making it such a pressure-filled situation was to dive in wholeheartedly into all things Freddie. And go to London, take some piano lessons, singing lessons, do some movement coaching, and give it all I have.”

He also approached the role of the “We Are the Champions” singer through his teeth, telling AARP The Magazine in its October/November issue that he scheduled a meeting with the makeup designer of the film to get teeth that looked identical to Mercury’s overbite.