Queen Member Brian May’s Favorite Bohemian Rhapsody Scene Almost Got Cut

Queen recording in the studio in Bohemian Rhapsody

The living members of Queen worked closely on the production of Bohemian Rhapsody, but that doesn't mean they had control over the film. Queen's Brian May recently revealed that his favorite scene in the movie was very nearly cut for no reason beyond an attempt to reduce the film's runtime. It seems the scene in which Freddie Mercury reveals he's going solo was very nearly not in the movie. According to May...

My favourite Rami moment is when Freddie is plucking up the courage to tell us he's going off to do his solo album. It's a wonderful piece of acting -- and a lot of that wasn't in the script. And when I watch it I feel that is so Freddie. He'd talk quietly, puff on his cigarette, not want to come out with the words. Eventually he did it -- in a very cut-and-dry manner. But you can see the angst inside. That scene nearly got cut from the movie -- that's a little secret -- just because there's always this pressure to make things shorter.

It's more than a little surprising to learn that this scene was almost cut, as it's a really important moment in the movie. It's the point at which the tension within Queen hits its breaking point. Freddie Mercury, played by Rami Malek, announces to the rest of the band that he's going to be going solo, at least for a while. The rest of the band doesn't appreciate the decision for, among other reasons, the fact that Mercury is making more money going solo than the band has ever seen.

It is a well-done scene. Mercury knows that what he's going to say is going to be an issue. He's nervous about bringing it up. He had previously rejected the idea of going solo in the film. It's not entirely clear when he changed his mind, though it's indicated that the band's manager, who had a personal relationship with Mercury, was a major influence on the decision.

If you take the scene out then the band never has a falling out, at least not on screen. Perhaps there was a shorter scene, maybe one with Mercury being convinced by the manager to take the solo contract, that would have replaced it. While it might have been possible to make the story work without the scene, one would think that other sequences in the movie that were less vital to the story arc would have been axed.

Brian May tells Louder that the scene was quite realistic to the real events of the conversation, which is why the band fought for the scene to stay in the film.

Whatever the reason, the scene was ultimately saved. Bohemian Rhapsody ended up with a run time of just over two hours, which is far from uncommon these days.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis.  Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.