Brian May has bad news for anyone who wants a 'Bohemian Rhapsody' sequel

Tom Beasley
'Bohemian Rhapsody' was a huge, Oscar-winning success. (Credit: Fox/Peter Parks/AFP via Getty)

Brian May has poured ice water on the prospect of a sequel to Oscar-winning Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody, saying he doesn’t think another movie will happen in the near future.

The 72-year-old guitarist said a potential follow-up would likely focus on the final years of frontman Freddie Mercury’s life, which wouldn’t be “an uplifting thing to do”.

Rami Malek won an Oscar for playing Mercury in the 2018 film, which was also a box office hit to the tune of $904m (£733m) worldwide.

Read more: Rami Malek almost had Rocketman cameo as Mercury

But now May has told Rolling Stone that a sequel to Bohemian Rhapsody is unlikely.

He said: “Don’t think we didn’t think about it. We’ve talked. Basically we think not, at the moment.

“Things could change, I suppose, but I think it would be difficult.”

Gwilym Lee as Brian May and Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury in 'Bohemian Rhapsody'. (Credit: Fox)

May said the prospect of following Mercury’s struggle with AIDS and gradual disappearance from public life to battle the disease was not an attractive one for a movie.

“I don’t think that would be an uplifting thing to do,” he added.

“I’m not saying it’s impossible because there is a great story there, but we don’t feel that’s the story we want to tell at the moment.”

Read more: How Malek convinced Dexter Fletcher to finish Bohemian Rhapsody

Speculation about a Bohemian Rhapsody sequel has been rampant ever since the first film became such a huge hit — both in cinemas and on home entertainment — but May is not convinced.

He said: “We don’t really think there’s another movie there. That’s the long and the short of it. I think we should look somewhere else.”

Freddie Mercury of Queen on 9/19/80 in Chicago, Il. (Photo by Paul Natkin/WireImage)

Despite its success at the box office and at the Oscars — where it won four awards — Bohemian Rhapsody divided critics, with some criticising the portrayal of Mercury’s sexuality.

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Several surviving members of Queen have reacted to the negative press, with both May and drummer Roger Taylor speaking out against the critics.

Taylor said many of the reviews were “sneering and superficial” and added that “people know a lot more than film critics”.

Certainly, the box office receipts and heaving trophy cabinet will be enough that those reviews don’t hurt too much.