Sacha Baron Cohen, the man behind Borat and Bruno, will take on some serious fare when he stars in the role of Queen’s Freddie Mercury in an upcoming biopic. The as-yet-untitled film will track Mercury’s career from the beginnings of Queen to their performance at the 1985 Live Aid concert at Wembley Stadium. (Deadline reports that Mercury’s final years and AIDS-related death in 1991 won’t be part of the film.) No director has been hired yet, but the script will be written by Peter Morgan, who scripted the acclaimed Frost/Nixon and The Last King of Scotland. Queen’s site and GK Films, which won the rights to use Queen’s music, and say that the film will start production in 2011.
It’s unknown whether Cohen will attempt to replicate Mercury’s vocals or if the original tracks will be used. “Queen is one of the greatest rock bands of all time, and a music brand all unto itself,” GK Films’ Graham King said in a statement. “Freddie Mercury was an awe-inspiring performer, so with Sacha in the starring role, coupled with Peter’s screenplay and the support of Queen, we have the perfect combination to tell the real story behind their success.”