Speaking before the Queen biopic was released, the now-Oscar-winning star said that – when he was first going to meet Brian May and Roger Taylor – he felt as if he was being sent a sign by the late Mercury, who died in 1991.
Malek told Stephen Colbert that he was late for an early meeting about the project, but something told him to pause en route when he was passed a picture of the group.
“I went to do some pre-recording and it was at Abbey Road – I was a little late, London traffic, whatever,” he said.
“I was running across the street and I look back and it’s the iconic crosswalk that the Beatles have the album cover on… and instantly I’m like, ‘what the hell is happening to me right now?’
“I race up the stairs, the meeting is on the fourth floor.
“And around the third floor, I’m passing by all these photos of bands that you love, and suddenly I stop – and I’m like, ‘what are you doing, you’re late, you shouldn’t stop right now?’
“And I take two steps back and I see this autographed photo of all the members of Queen.
“Freddie Mercury’s face just kind of staring at me – telling me, ‘don’t do this!’”
As the audience laughed, he added: “It was a challenge!
“I kind of looked back, and I said, ‘no… no…’ – it really felt inspiring!
“But it definitely was that look of, ‘don’t f**k this up’.”
Safe to say, Malek did not mess it up at all – he won the Best Actor prize at the Oscars for his portrayal of Mercury.
In the same interview – recorded back in 2017 – Malek revealed his favourite Queen song.
“A go-to Queen song… I think I like some of the more obscure ones,” he mused.
“There’s this one called Lily of the Valley that I love. But Somebody To Love is a huge one.”
Queen, meanwhile, are off on tour – with Adam Lambert back on vocals – later this month.
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