Rami Malek Discusses His Freddie Mercury Transformation


-First of all, “Mr. Robot” —
-Yeah. -Congrats.
That’s such a great show. You know, I’ve had you — we’ve
had you on talking about that. Is it true, I heard, that it
might be coming to an end? -It’s so sad. Yes. -Why?
-I don’t know. I don’t know. [ Laughter ]
Because I love it so much. I’m quite frankly
a bit disappointed. But Sam Esmail, who writes,
creates and directs it and is the genius mind behind it had a finite period of time
he wanted to tell this story. And it’s coming to
its conclusion this year. -Gosh.
-But, you know, the best part of it is that I wouldn’t have
had this role had the producers not seen me on “Mr. Robot.” I wouldn’t have got the role
of Freddie Mercury. -Is that right?
-So that’s a pretty cool thing. -Absolutely.
-Yes. -And you got an Emmy for it,
as well. -Yes.
-I think it’s — [ Laughter ]
You did, I mean, yeah. -I have to remind myself I did.
-You got an Emmy. Yeah. [ Cheers and applause ]
You’re good. Remind yourself.
-Yes, thank you. -Let’s talk about —
-Let’s chat. -…”Bohemian rhapsody,”
because if I had your e-mail, your phone number, I would have
called you a gazillion times and said, “Dude,
you were unbelievable! You were unbelievable
in this movie!” -You have my e-mail
and phone number. -That’s true.
But I decided to not call you. [ Laughter ] I — I flipped out.
-Did you? -You were unbelievable.
-Thanks, man. -I mean, ’cause, dude,
this is — I mean, look, this is you right here. This is supermodel, actor Rami Malek right here,
by the way. [ Cheers and applause ] Congrats on this cover,
by the way. -Isn’t that nice?
-Is this true — -I didn’t think that
would ever happen. -This the first ever “GQ”
in the Middle East. -Yes.
-They never had this. -If ever I was going to be on
the “GQ,” it would be the “GQ”
in the Middle East. [ Laughter ]
-Yeah. That’s kind of amazing for you, right?
-Yeah. It’s huge. I mean, my family is Egyptian. I’m a first-generation American. So, you know, being Egyptian is in the fiber of my DNA and something I’m immensely
proud of. So to grace this cover
is an accomplishment. I never would have thought
I would be saying that, but it really is. -It’s a big deal.
-Yeah. [ Cheers and applause ] -This guy —
you don’t look like — You don’t look like
Freddie Mercury, to me. I wouldn’t —
I wouldn’t cast you. -I didn’t think so either, yeah. -But then when you see
this movie — Guys, look at this —
side by side. That’s Rami. [ Applause ] Dude, you are unbelievable. I mean, I freaked out.
I mean, I’m watching scenes, And I go,
“Is that a real clip of — the real clip of Live Aid?” When you’re going out,
it’s just you going from behind. And I go — I mean, even
your posture is different than your own posture.
-Yeah, yeah, it is. -Right, because this is
probably how in “Mr. Robot”, this is your posture.
-Yeah. I mean, he’s so — I have these
teeth that I wear, exactly. I have these teeth that I wear. And the first time
I put them in my mouth, I was incredibly insecure. And then I found myself
compensating. I just started sitting up
straight and being more elegant. And he had the best posture.
And you start to think, “Oh, these are the reasons
he is who he is.” -Wow, that’s interesting.
-It is, right? -And you just rock it, dude. I can’t even believe you —
I mean, how did you even pull off the Live Aid thing? -You’re not gonna believe this. One of the greatest rock
performances in history. It’s considered maybe
the greatest. For some reason, our producers
thought it would be a good idea to start with that on day one. [ Laughter ] -That was the first day
of shooting? -That was the first day, man.
-Wow! -So, I —
-Wow! -About halfway into the day,
I thought, “Oh, man.” -Jump into the fire, man.
-I jumped — trial by fire, entire baptism by fire. But I thought, “They must have
reason for doing this.” Because, you know,
if halfway through they get — we get through this and we suck,
they’ll just pull the plug on the whole production,
pack it up and go home, right?” -Smart, yeah, you save
a lot of money that way. -Save $60 million. [ Laughter ] We don’t have to watch
this B-rate version of Queen for three months. [ Laughter ]
-Yeah, exactly, yeah. -When I got the call sheet
for day two, it was like winning an Oscar. [ Laughter ]
-It’s like — really. -We’re back!
-“We are making this movie. This is great.”
-It’s happening! -You wore the white tank
and the jeans. -Yeah. It’s surreal
walking out there after watching that concert
so many times and — -Did you feel at any point —
you must as an actor, but did you feel at one point
you’re like, “I actually am turning into
Freddie Mercury.” When did you feel?
Like when you put the teeth in, or — Who did your —
-The teeth helped. [ Laughter ] -You’ll see it.
I mean, you’ll see. -They’re there. I’m warning you. -They’re definitely there, yeah. -They’re there. But, I mean, he got called “Bucky” as a kid before he was even called
Freddie Mercury. And I won’t tell you
his real name. If you don’t know, you’ll have
to find out in the movie. Don’t Google it, please. [ Laughter ] But you put the teeth in,
and that’s one thing. I had this exceptional makeup
artist named Jan Sewell. She did Eddie Redmayne
in “The Theory of Everything.” -Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.
-Remember that transformation? I’m like, “I get her? Amazing.”
-Wow! And then I had Julian Day
do the costumes. And these costumes, maybe…
-The best. -…100 different outfits,
right? -If you’re a fan of Queen, the costumes alone
will get applause. -Right? They will.
And they do. -They do?
-They do. -I would go nuts for you.
-Yeah. -I was like, “That is classic!”
-Yeah. -Only Freddie Mercury
could pull that off. -Only Freddie Mercury.
And it’s a long way from “Mr. Robot” where I wear
one thing every single day. [ Laughter ]
-You wear a hoodie. -Yeah.
-You wear a hoodie, yeah. -That’s it.
-That’s it, yeah. -I mean, talk about
polar opposites. -But do you know how to play
the piano? -I’ve never played the piano. I was scared
of playing the piano. As a kid, it seemed like
such a foreign thing. I told them when I sat down,
I go, “Listen, guys, I’m not going to
be the Hollywood actor that sells myself here. I don’t play the piano. I don’t think I’m a singer. I have a very unusual way
of dancing. [ Laughter ] That’s about as close as I can
get to Freddie Mercury.” -And they still hired you?
-I think they thought, “Oh, here we’d get
a humble actor for once. [ Laughter ]
There’s a modest guy.” Yeah.
-You just hit a home run. They got to be — everyone’s
got to be so psyched for your performance.
-Oh, man. -I mean, you at one point
played the piano laying upside down. You were laying on the ground
playing it with your hands crossed.
-Spoiler alert. -Oh, sorry. Yeah, yeah. [ Laughter ] -Please. Stop.
-Please, there’s other ones. -No, no, no. That was something
Freddie did every night. And the man never ceases
to amaze me. As much prep as I did, I found out more and more about
what he was capable of. And I tried to do him honor
and — -You did.
-Yeah. He is a magnificent human being. And I can’t wait to share
this movie with a brand-new generation. -Oh, just so cool.
I want to show a clip. -Show it.
-This is Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury
in “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Take a look at this. -What’s going on?
-You’d know if you were on time. -I want to give the audience
a song that they can perform. -So what can they do? [ Stomping and clapping
rhythmically ] -Imagine thousands of people
doing this in unison. Huh? -What’s the lyric? [ Cheers and applause ] ♪♪ -♪ We will, we will rock you ♪ -♪ We will, we will ♪ -♪ Rock you ♪ [ Cheers and applause ] -Rami Malek, everybody.

100 thoughts on “Rami Malek Discusses His Freddie Mercury Transformation

  1. Felt like Freddie ghost possessed Rami. My gosh the resemblance. I hope Rami can move on after this film and won't fall any depression or smtg like some other actors. I kinda worry for him 🙁

  2. The host speaks so fast I can't understand what he's saying. Like on Helium🎈 I like Rami he did a great job at Queen great film.🎤

  3. Brian why don’t you perform just one time with Marc Martel (the closest voice to Freddie Mercury on earth these days) and see how people will react for that?

  4. i finally watch Bohemian Rhapsody today and it was so good. Rami as Freddie is phenomenal i kinda had withdrawal, so i check out BR's related promo and interview and came across this one.
    at 3:59 rami said "it's like winning an oscar". then i realized this interview was BEFORE the movie came out!! goodness gracious we never know how our future will be. he indeed won oscar!! now i know why they won major awards. spectacular movie and acting. totally deserving 👏
    i'm not sure how rami's personality and character is in real life but i SEE freddie in here. his movement, gesture, the way he speaks.. idk maybe cos i'm still in withdrawal haha

  5. I was raised on Queen and I will never forget the day he died. I was 7 and I balled my eyes out. I was so upset that I never got to see him live and still am to this day. That last fact I didn't realise until I watched this vid, got a bit emotional when Rami started talking about him being an incredible person. We will never forget you Freddie 😢❤

  6. Being a huge Mercury fan his portrail of the singer wasn't all accurate why didn't the producers go with a tribute artist for the role there is a few that actually look and can sing like freddie, plus they really egagerated his teeth a little in film as well, body language and his voice was spot on but everything else did need improvement to me

  7. Is this the real life?
    Is this just fantasy?
    Caught in a landslide,
    No escape from reality.

    Open your eyes,
    Look up to the skies and see,
    I'm just a poor boy, I need no sympathy,
    Because I'm easy come, easy go,
    Little high, little low,
    Any way the wind blows doesn't really matter to me, to me.

    Mama, just killed a man,
    Put a gun against his head,
    Pulled my trigger, now he's dead.
    Mama, life had just begun,
    But now I've gone and thrown it all away.

    Mama, ooh,
    Didn't mean to make you cry,
    If I'm not back again this time tomorrow,
    Carry on, carry on as if nothing really matters.

    Too late, my time has come,
    Sends shivers down my spine,
    Body's aching all the time.
    Goodbye, everybody, I've got to go,
    Gotta leave you all behind and face the truth.

    Mama, ooh (any way the wind blows),
    I don't wanna die,
    I sometimes wish I'd never been born at all.

    I see a little silhouetto of a man,
    Scaramouche, Scaramouche, will you do the Fandango?
    Thunderbolt and lightning,
    Very, very frightening me.
    (Galileo) Galileo.
    (Galileo) Galileo,
    Galileo Figaro
    Magnifico-o-o-o-o.

    I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me.
    He's just a poor boy from a poor family,
    Spare him his life from this monstrosity.

    Easy come, easy go, will you let me go?
    Bismillah! No, we will not let you go. (Let him go!)
    Bismillah! We will not let you go. (Let him go!)
    Bismillah! We will not let you go. (Let me go!)
    Will not let you go. (Let me go!)
    Never let you go (Never, never, never, never let me go)
    Oh oh oh oh
    No, no, no, no, no, no, no
    Oh, mama mia, mama mia (Mama mia, let me go.)
    Beelzebub has a devil put aside for me, for me, for me.

    So you think you can stone me and spit in my eye?
    So you think you can love me and leave me to die?
    Oh, baby, can't do this to me, baby,
    Just gotta get out, just gotta get right outta here.

    (Ooooh, ooh yeah, ooh yeah)

    Nothing really matters,
    Anyone can see,
    Nothing really matters,
    Nothing really matters to me.

    Any way the wind blows.

  8. Bad movie, bad actor, at least representing Freddie. Maybe younger and generations clueless to the real deal think this was great, but it was a big disappointment. No one in this world can even try to mimic Freddie Mercury. They look ridiculous.

  9. Great actor…but where his family is from…Egypt…90% of Egyptians believe in sharia law…meaning if you leave the muslim religion…you should be prosecuted and put to death. YAY FOR ISLAM!!!

  10. Loved Rami in Twilight Breaking Dawn 2. He was fantastic in Bohemian Rhapsody. Rami is Egyptian? So cool, he was Egyptian in Twilight!

  11. I think Freddie left his soul in Rami – you can still see him shining through! Allthough I have missed important moments of Queen-history in the movie (like, what happened to "Highlander" – this was a VERY IMPORTANT movie for Queen – they wrote the complete soundtrack with Michael Kamen), this movie is just AWESOME and Rami really is a cool guy!

  12. If u was a host and someone touched my hand gay/straight/bi I would put no pass on it the man is being paid a mint to interact with people not to act above them.

  13. I'm curious about the hand thing, is it a germaphobic thing? OCD? Or just doesn't like to be touched. I don't like handshakes etc but I wouldn't react like that if someone grabbed my hand.

  14. Fun fact: My dad went to College with Rami they both graduated from University of Evansville in 2003. He never really talked to him, they would say hello once in a while but never really communicated much with him. But he had a lot of friends in theater, so he saw him a lot because his friends were friends with him.

    Lol the world is so small these days 😂

  15. Did ye not notice when he said like the spoiler alert . Rami grabbed his thumb nd dipshit pulss a dirty look he didnt like that at all

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