Last year, Bohemian Rhapsody dethroned 2015’s Straight Outta Compton to become the highest grossing music biopic of all time with its $902 million worldwide box office haul. It’s no surprise a musical epic about the formation, struggles and success of Queen was a blockbuster, the British rock band is one of the most recognized acts across the globe.
The movie also found triumph stacking up a ton of distinguished accolades during award season despite average reviews from critics about the film’s “paint-by-numbers” approach to the band’s bold legacy. Overall, Bohemian Rhapsody was nominated for 57 awards in over 30 ceremonies during the star-studded movie season and was decorated with 21 total wins.
Now that the gold glitter has settled from Oscar season, let’s break down some of the movie’s biggest award wins. Pro tip: Play Queen’s “We Are The Champions” as you read on:
Bohemian Rhapsody At The 2019 Golden Globes
While Bohemian Rhapsody was in award conversation from the beginning, bets weren’t high on the biopic taking the cake for award season’s highest merits until it took home some key trophies at the Golden Globes during the Andy Samberg and Sandra Oh hosted movie and television show recognized by the Hollywood Foreign Press. The movie was nominated for two awards and won them both. Take a look:
Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama, Rami Malek
Best Motion Picture - Drama
Rami Malek offered up a transformative performance of a lifetime as rock icon Freddie Mercury, not just donning fake teeth to resemble the frontman, but replicating his mannerisms and his on-stage energy (almost shot-for-shot in the film’s final Live Aid scene). He won over Bradley Cooper (A Star is Born), Willem Dafoe (At Eternity’s Gate), Lucas Hedges (Boy Erased) and John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman).
Bohemian Rhapsody was nominated for the most distinguished award of the night “Best Picture” alongside Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther, Spike Lee’s BlackKklansman, Barry Jenkins’ If Beale Street Could Talk and Bradley Cooper’s A Star is Born in the drama category over the comedy/musical category, which Green Book won for.
It was certainly a surprise win, especially since the movie has the lowest Rotten Tomato score of 61% among its fellow nominees in the 89% - 97% range. The win showed the movie was being taken seriously by voters going forward gave the movie a huge boost for the remainder of Oscar season.
Bohemian Rhapsody At the 2019 Screen Actors Guild Awards
A few weeks later, the movie about rock’s “Killer Queen” took the 25th SAG Awards with similar accolades then what had just won at the Golden Globes on the board for the film: recognition for Malek and the award show’s own version of “Best Picture” – “Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture”. Here’s what Bohemian Rhapsody won that night:
Outstanding Performance by an Male Actor in a Leading Role - Rami Malek
He did it again. The Mr. Robot actor even won over Christian Bale’s Dick Cheney performance, who won in the comedy Best Actor category at the Golden Globes this time around, really proving he could sweep this whole thing. The film’s other nomination went to the cast of Black Panther who made history as the first Marvel film to receive such accolade and the highest-grossing film to ever win the SAG award.
Bohemian Rhapsody At the 2019 BAFTA Awards
The Queen movie then braved the British Academy of Film and Television Arts award show at Royal Albert Hall in London with a whopping seven nominations in the running including Best Costume Design, Best Make Up/Hair, Best Cinematography, Best Editing, Best Sound, Best Leading Actor and Outstanding British Film of the Year. Check out which one’s the movie won below:
Best Leading Actor - Rami Malek
Best Sound - John Casali, Tim Cavagin, Nina Hartstone, Paul Massey and John Warhurst
Once again, no other male actor could beat out Rami’s Freddie Mercury portrayal. This time the movie was also recognized for “Best Sound” for all the work that was put into creating a realistic portrayal of various Queen performances, using a mixture of Freddie’s voice, Rami’s and even an expert Queen-sounding YouTube star. This award gave Bohemian Rhapsody a leg up in one technical category going into the Oscars, though Netflix’s Roma and The Favourite primarily won over the movie in other categories.
The 2019 Academy Awards Bohemian Rhapsody Won
Then came Hollywood’s biggest night and the official cap on award season: The Oscars. Bohemian Rhapsody’s award reign opened up the hostless show with a energetic kickoff performance by Queen and new frontman Adam Lambert. The movie had five awards on the line that night. After Bohemian Rhapsody had previously not been considered as an Oscar’s favorite it's gained traction from ceremonies gave the movie a overall triumphant conclusion.
Best Performance By An Actor in Leading Role - Rami Malek
Best Achievement in Film Editing - John Ottman
Best Achievement in Sound Editing - John Warhurst and Nina Hartstone
Best Achievement in Sound Mixing - Paul Massey, Tim Cavagin, John Casali
Bohemian Rhapsody won everyone of their nominations except for Best Picture, which was now infamously given to Green Book. The film swept a lot of the Academy’s technical awards, with more nods to its use of sound and most controversially for its Film Editing, which has been since criticized for its whiplash cuts in one particular restaurant scene.
Rami Malek’s performance as Freddie Mercury is clearly the MVP of Bohemian Rhapsody, which early critics of the film still undeniably praised, even if they were bothered by other elements of the movie. Take a look at the actor’s last hurrah “Another One Bites The Dust” first Oscar win from the big night below:
What a success story Bohemian Rhapsody was! The film itself went through its own roadblocks before hitting all these milestones such as Bryan Singer’s firing as director late in the project’s filming and it received early criticism for not exploring all the facets of the band. Now looking back, Bohemian Rhapsody is a grand celebration of the late rock icon Freddie Mercury, his Queen band mates and the lasting impact of their music and story.