Brian May teased that Queen are “looking at ideas” for a possible Bohemian Rhapsody sequel, but he admitted “it’s going to be hard to follow” the Oscar-winning 2018 movie.
The guitarist revealed that news during an Instagram Live chat (via NME), noting that the original’s massive success has only added to the challenge of making a follow-up.
“None of us could have predicted how massive that was going to be,” he said. “We put a lot of heart and soul into making it, and no one could have predicted [its success], as it was bigger than Gone With the Wind. But yes, we are thinking maybe it could happen, but it would have to be a great script. It’s going to take a while to figure that out.”
This somewhat optimistic tone marks a shift in May’s thinking compared to May 2020, when he told Rolling Stone, “We don’t really think there’s another movie there. That’s the long and the short of it. … There are other ideas that we had, but I don’t think a sequel will happen. But we have looked at it pretty seriously.”
May added that Queen weren’t interested in a film focused on Freddie Mercury’s final years, when he battled HIV/AIDS. “I don’t think that would be an uplifting thing to do,” he said. “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.”
Exploring a possible sequel is understandable: Despite its mixed critical reception, Bohemian Rhapsody earned more than $900 million worldwide and received four Academy Awards, including Best Actor for Rami Malek as Mercury.