Since Fox suspended production on the upcoming Freddie Mercury biopic on December 1st due to director Bryan Singer failing to return to set after Thanksgiving, the studio has now made the final decision to release Singer from his contract on the project.
The production, which has been shooting in London, has been dogged with tensions between Singer and lead Rami Malek, who is playing Mercury, over Singer’s “unprofessionalism”, it is also said that Singer even threw an object at Malek. This coupled with the disappearance from the set on multiple occasions forcing, at one point, cinematographer, Thomas Newton Sigel, into the director’s chair was the last straw.
Malek had complained to the studio, charging Singer with not being present on set, unreliability and unprofessionalism. Even Tom Hollander, who takes on the role as Queen’s Manager Jim Beach quit the picture for a period due to Singer’s lack of professionalism.
However, Singer has counterclaimed that the Studio had refused to let him tend to a sick parent, he also went on to make a statement to state that the feud between himself and Malek had been remedied.
“I wanted nothing more than to be able to finish this project and help honour the legacy of Freddie Mercury and Queen,” he said in a statement, “but Fox would not permit me to do so because I needed to temporarily put my health, and the health of my loved ones, first.”
“Rumors that my unexpected departure from the film was sparked by a dispute I had with Rami Malek are not true. While, at times, we did have creative differences on set, Rami and I successfully put those differences behind us and continued to work on the film together until just prior to Thanksgiving.”
Before the production had even started Singer had been warned about his behaviour by the Fox chairman, Stacy Snider and president of production Emma Watts. With only two weeks left on the filming schedule, the race is now on to find a replacement.