Rami stopped by Good Morning America when the new Bond trailer dropped and we had a sneak peek of how fun and amazing the new press tour is going to be with Daniel Craig. Check out the video below and the photo coverage in the gallery.
Rami Malek is having a good hair day. “This is the best his hair’s been since February,” says the young woman twirling scented oil through Malek’s strands while the actor stands obediently still, slightly bashful, like anyone who is being publicly oiled. His hair looks exactly the way it does in every episode of Mr. Robot, which is at the tail end of shooting its final season here in Brooklyn. The hair is worth mentioning because it has spawned a mini men’s version of the Rachel, Jennifer Aniston’s hair on Friends, in that it is easily identifiable and widely imitated. “It’s a two on the sides that’s faded to a one and a half,” says the young woman with the oil, in case anyone wants to memorize that and take it to the barber. “And it’s disconnected from the top to the sides and faded up to the parietal ridge.”
“This is GQ, not National Geographic,”Malek says. “Disconnected is appropriate, though.”
It is. Malek had been acting for more than a decade when he got the part of Elliot Alderson on Mr. Robot, which came out in 2015 on USA, of all networks, and immediately generated a robust Reddit presence and an ardent audience of people for whom a dystopian but sensitive thriller felt appropriate in an age of deep fakes and flourishing conspiracies. Elliot works as a cybersecurity technician who gets embroiled in a hacktivist scheme to wrest financial justice from an evil corporation. He has a rocky relationship with humanity but a lucid one with the technological reality of the world we live in. You get the sense, in watching, that if you knew what he did, you’d microwave your SIM cards and self-medicate with morphine, too.
For three years Malek’s fame gently increased as the show’s influence grew. In 2016 he won an Emmy. Then he starred as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody, which became the highest-grossing music biopic of all time, and he swept awards season, receiving a Golden Globe, a SAG Award, a BAFTA Award, and, of course, an Oscar, for which he gave a graceful acceptance speech that touched on his status as the son of immigrants. Next year he’ll play the villain in the new James Bond movie with Daniel Craig. Descriptions of his rise often involve violent metaphors (catapulting to stardom, exploding into the zeitgeist), which is inadvertently appropriate for someone who physically falls down as much as Malek. [More at Source]
Rami Malek knows what people might expect from Bohemian Rhapsody. “It could easily have been a monumental piece of shit, right?”
Consider the case for the prosecution: it is a biopic, that most maligned of movie genres, and one that has wrong-footed the most surefooted talents: remember Leonardo DiCaprio as J Edgar Hoover? He may well hope you don’t. Worse, it is a music biopic, a sub-genre that has proven even more problematic: Dennis Quaid as Jerry Lee Lewis?
Finally, Bohemian Rhapsody is a biopic of Queen, most obviously of Freddie Mercury, one of the handful of frontmen in the history of rock who can be said to be touched by genius. Its set piece is the Live Aid Wembley concert, which not only involved assembling 72,000 fans dressed like it was 1985 but also recreating one of the single defining performances in pop, one that was watched by 40 per cent of the planet, live. (“Day-o… Day-o” etc.)
While we’re discussing difficulties, we might throw in the surviving members of Queen’s fondness for not always showing off their legacy in the best light, elements of which one suspects might have had poor old Freddie pirouetting in his grave. There is, of course, the deathless Queen musical, We Will Rock You, from a book by Ben Elton, which seems to have been playing in London longer than Trooping the Colour, despite universally horrible reviews. There have been Queen computer games, Queen collaborations with the boyband 5ive and the rapper Wyclef Jean, and a Queen Monopoly boardgame. (“Because as Freddie used to say, when they asked him if he liked being rich, ‘Yes, I like getting lots of money because it tells me that people like what I do’,” explained guitarist Brian May to a perplexed reporter. “So there is the same kind of ethos behind this game.”)
Then there is Bohemian Rhapsody’s own troubled birth. The film has been in production in some form or another since 2000. The casting of Sacha Baron Cohen as Mercury bit the dust after May reportedly found him “too distracting”. Then director Bryan Singer walked off set with two weeks filming still to go, to be replaced by Dexter Fletcher, who, to be fair, did have biopic experience: his last film was ski-jumping drama Eddie the Eagle (2016).
And yet, despite all this, the 40-or-so minutes of Bohemian Rhapsody that Esquire has seen very much suggest a victory snatched from the jaws of defeat. And the revelation is Malek’s performance: on and off-stage, he is a terrific Mercury. [More at Source]
On his very first day as Mr Freddie Mercury on the set of Bohemian Rhapsody, Mr Rami Malek took the stage, literally, for what he now calls “the most difficult and complex part of the movie,” recreating Queen’s incredible performance for Live Aid, at Wembley Stadium, in 1985. “We had to shoot it first because of weather,” Mr Malek says, “Otherwise all those background actors in summer attire would be freezing!”
We’re at Cecconi’s in Beverly Hills, a sceney lunch spot in full swing, and Mr Malek’s on his second Campari and soda. Like many of the characters for which he is best known, including Elliot Alderson, the paranoiac hacktivist in Mr Robot, he’s a little intense in person, with a deliberate, elongated way of speaking and a probing look. He’s not a fan of interviews, as a rule. He watches the recorder on the table carefully and thinks before he speaks.
“I had two weeks, after finishing the third season of Mr Robot, before stepping onto the Live Aid stage. And we shot the whole concert over seven days. Move for move. Identical.” His is an extraordinary performance, and Mr Malek is rightly proud of his work. “I’m thrilled with the whole movie,” he says. “That might be an asshole thing to say, but I worked harder on this than anything, and it could so easily have been a disaster.”
Mr Malek, 37, has come to be known for his facility with complex characters – often playing those with dark interior lives, characters such as Snafu, a disturbed marine in the 2010 HBO mini-series The Pacific, or Clark, the loyal son-in-law to Mr Philip Seymour Hoffman’s charlatan magus in Mr Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master. “There’s so much we bury deep inside of ourselves,” Mr Malek says now, “and I’m fascinated by why and how. All these questions that we subconsciously ask, like: who are we, what are we doing here, are we essentially good or evil?” [More at Source]