Sacha Baron Cohen to play Freddie Mercury

Seems the man can do it all… or at least, they hope he can.

Master of disguise Sacha Baron Cohen will star as the late, great Freddie Mercury in a film written by “Frost/Nixon” scribe Peter Morgan.

Says Deadline, ”The untitled film will be financed by GK Films partners Graham King and Tim Headington, who’ll produce in partnership with Robert De Niro and Jane Rosenthal’s Tribeca Productions, and Queen Films. Morgan is already working on a script focused on the band’s formative years, leading up to Queen’s appearance at Live Aid in 1985. Queen’s performance is considered one of the rock’s all-time great live concert appearances.

A rights package has been set that includes the band’s tunes, including Bohemian Rhapsody, We Will Rock You, We Are the Champions , Another One Bites The Dust and You’re My Best Friend. It is unclear whether Baron Cohen will sing—I’m told he can sing—or whether Mercury’s vocals will be used.”

King said: “Queen is one of the greatest rock bands of all time, and a music brand all unto itself,” he 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.”

As a performer, Mercury was known for his flamboyant stage persona and powerful vocals over a four-octave range. As a songwriter, Mercury composed many hits for Queen, including “Bohemian Rhapsody”, “Killer Queen”, “Somebody to Love”, “Don’t Stop Me Now”, “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” and “We Are the Champions”. In addition to his work with Queen, he led a solo career, penning hits such as “Barcelona”, “I Was Born to Love You” and “Living on My Own”. He died of bronchopneumonia brought on by AIDS on 24 November 1991, only one day after publicly acknowledging he had the disease.

Film wise, Queen contributed to quite a few film soundtracks including “Iron Eagle” and most famously, “Highlander”.