Rami Malek Couldn’t Shake Freddie Mercury’s Accent After ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’

Freddie Mercury transformed music forever as the lead singer of the band Queen. The icon received the biopic treatment with 2018’s Bohemian Rhapsody, named after one of the group’s most iconic songs. To do Freddie Mercury justice, Rami Malek had to fully immerse himself in the character — including taking on his accent. 

‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ won Rami Malek an Oscar 

rami malek freddie mercury accent
Rami Malek attends the World Premiere of ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ at the SSE Arena Wembley in London. October 23, 2018 in London, United Kingdom. | Wiktor Szymanowicz/Future Publishing via Getty Images

Malek earned a well-deserved Academy Award for his role as Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody. He took home the statuette for Best Actor, an amazing accomplishment. In his acceptance speech, Malek talked about Mercury and his impact on the world. 

Mercury was the son of immigrants. He spent time in his parents’ native India as a child. Yet Mercury didn’t conform to his parents’ traditional values. In fact, he didn’t conform to any values of his time period. Malek pointed out in his acceptance speech that Mercury forged his own path. Fans are still fascinated with Mercury’s life, and Malek says that’s because stories like his are important, and inspiring. 

Malek himself was the child of immigrants, but to the U.S., not the U.K. The actor was born in the U.S., but his parents were Egyptian. Malek claimed in his speech that he wasn’t necessarily the natural choice to play Mercury, in part because he doesn’t have a British accent. But Malek was able to imitate Mercury’s accent perfectly. In fact, he did it so well that it stuck. 

Rami Malek worked so hard on his Freddie Mercury accent that he couldn’t stop using it 

Malek spent hours a day preparing to play Mercury, even before the movie was green-lit. All that work paid off. According to an interview with GQ, Malek perfected the British accent to the point that crew members were surprised when he switched out of “Freddie” mode and went back to being Rami.

“I think there were moments towards the end of the shoot where I started to affect more Rami than Freddie,” said Malek. “I realized I was throwing a lot of the crew off because they had only really seen me for the majority as Freddie.”

Despite stating he’s “not a method actor,” the star committed to the voice. “I would stay in that accent because it’s so lovely and it’s quite fun and delicious walking around as Freddie Mercury every day,” Rami Malek said.

Malek continued to use Britishisms in his speech after filming on Bohemian Rhapsody ended. He even used the word “mum” when discussing his mom in the interview. 

But Mercury was much more than just an accent. Malek had to completely become Mercury for the role. That included some of Mercury’s unique physical features. 

Rami Malek had to replicate Freddie Mercury’s unique teeth 

Mercury had a very unique set of teeth. The singer had four extra teeth, something which may have affected his signature vocal range. Mercury was self-conscious about his appearance because of the extra teeth, but would never get them removed because it could affect his voice. 

In preparation for the role, Malek began wearing fake teeth even before the movie was ready to film. He wore them while practicing Mercury’s accent and mannerisms so that it wouldn’t seem awkward when he had them on during filming. 

RELATED: Why Did ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ Upset Freddie Mercury’s Mother?