Rami Malek has won the leading actor prize at the BAFTAs for Bohemian Rhapsody. Malek plays iconic British rocker Freddie Mercury in the film, which charts his life and pop career with Queen.
Malek said: “This is truly extraordinary. Thank you to BAFTA for this gorgeous gift.
“I still cannot believe I’m included in this group of actors I so respect and admire. I share this with you guys, I thank my lucky stars.”
He went on: “It’s quite difficult entering your world in this role as an outsider. You Brits do it so well and it’s not lost on me how sacred your musical heritage is.
“Thank you, thank you, thank you for including me.”
He also thanked Dexter Fletcher, who was brought in to finish the film, but not the film’s named director Bryan Singer, who left the project.
He added: “Thank you so very much to Queen, the entire Queen family, I wouldn’t be here without you and to the greatest outsider of them all, for being so unwavering and unflinching and uncompromising in every which way, thank you Freddie Mercury again.”
Bohemian Rhapsody won two BAFTAs on the night, including one for Best Sound. It’ll next compete at the Oscars where it’s nominated for 5 Academy Awards, including another Best Actor nod for Rami Malek.
— BAFTA (@BAFTA) February 10, 2019
He faces stiff competition for the biggest prize in acting from Christian Bale (Vice), Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born), Willem Dafoe (At Eternity’s Gate), and Viggo Mortensen (Green Book).