Long before Rami Malek and Bohemian Rhapsody, there was Wayne and Garth. An entire generation likely associates Queen’s eponymous, operatic “Bohemian Rhapsody” with the headbanging antics of the stars of Wayne’s World, from the 1992 comedy. In a clever touch of creative casting, Bryan Singer recruits Wayne himself, Mike Myers, for a role in Bohemian Rhapsody, and we got the skinny from the cast on what it was like sharing a pivotal scene with the man who helped peddle Queen to the mainstream masses. We found out:
Rami Malek: Mike Myers has always been attached to this film because he is a massive Queen fan.
Gwilym Lee: I’ve been a complete fan of his. I’ve loved his films, and it was like the most surreal thing sitting opposite of him — that would be surreal in its own right, let alone having to actually act and perform with him. It was one of the greatest days.
Why is this such a big deal? Maybe you haven’t seen the comedy Wayne’s World, which was an offshoot of the skit that Mike Myers created on Saturday Night Live. You know, party time, excellent, all of that. But truly you have to be living under a rock to not know that Myers and his co-star, Dana Carvey, helped make Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” more popular by featuring it in a now-legendary scene where they head-bang to the tune while driving.
It’s an epic tribute to an epic song. Relive it here:
The new movie Bohemian Rhapsody performs clever stunt casting by adding Mike Myers is a small supporting role that’s crucial to the development of the actual song, “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Myers isn’t exactly a prolific actor these days. He was last seen hosting The Gong Show on television in character as a made-up person, Tommy Maitland.
In Bohemian Rhapsody, Mike Myers plays a fictional EMI record executive named Ray Foster. He doesn’t believe in the song “Bohemian Rhapsody,” and gives the Queen band members grief because it runs more than six minutes — way too long for radio play back in the day.
As CinemaBlend’s interview with the Bohemian Rhapsody cast continued, Joseph Mazzello, who plays Queen bandmate John Deacon, explained how cool it was to work with Myers because of his extreme preparation. Mazzello told us:
He came in in character right at the beginning of the day and until the end of the shoot. That was something that was really incredible to behold. But also, it was early in the shoot, too. And you would think, ‘Oh, he’s coming in for a couple of days. It’s sort of a gig. He’s there to have a laugh.’ But he cared so much about getting the performance right, and about getting all of his lines, and making everything perfect. And that was a really cool thing to see, the perfectionist element to his personality. And it sort of, I think, gave us the motivation to be, like, ‘Yeah, if he’s coming in for just this little bit, and is taking it this seriously, we have to match that.’
From the sound of it, working with Mike Myers early in the production set the tone for the rest of the cast, as they realized the importance of committing to their roles, and bringing them to life on screen. And it worked for Rami Malek, as most of the early praise for Bohemian Rhapsody is falling on the star of Silicon Valley, and his interpretation of the late Queen singer, Freddie Mercury.
It was Malek who reflected that Mike Myers arrived on set at a very good time, elaborating to CinemaBlend:
We had already shot [the] Live Aid [concert scenes]. We did it with three cameras running on cranes. We had cameras everywhere. So we did have the 22-minute version already to show him in one single take. And he got pretty emotional after. It was like the film! It was emotional at times, but also very funny.
And that goes a long way to understanding why Mike Myers would want to be involved in a movie like Bohemian Rhapsody. He carved his niche in the Hollywood stratosphere by making audiences laugh on movies like Austin Powers or the Shrek films. But Myers was never shy about going for emotion to sell a scene. He’s a natural fit here.
Want to watch the stars of Bohemian Rhapsody talk about the joy of working with Mike Myers in his pivotal scene? We have it here for you right now:
Led by Rami Malek, Bohemian Rhapsody tells the story of Queen, how a UK band found a singer in young Freddie Mercury, and how this musical genius carried an unsuspecting rock outfit to global superstardom.
In our review for the film, Mike Reyes notes that the film tries hard to cover a vast expanse of the band’s history, maybe glancing over some important beats in the journey of Freddie Mercury, the man. But it’s clear that the movie wants to spend the bulk of its time on the creation of the song of the movie’s title, and also in recreating Queen’s historic performance at Live Aid in 1985.
For a while, Bohemian Rhapsody was thought to be an Oscar vehicle for Rami Malek. And that’s still very much a possibility. Even the lukewarm reviews are going out of their way to praise Malek’s turn as Freddie Mercury, capturing the confidence and creativity that was found in this experimental musician. Just listen to the wrinkles that he brings to songs like “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “We Are The Champions” to understand what Mercury could have contributed to rock’s anthology if he didn’t leave us too soon.
Bohemain Rhapsody stars Rami Malek, Lucy Boynton, Joseph Mazzello, Ben Hardy, Aidan Gillen and Gwilym Lee. And Mike Myers, of course. The movie has opened in select global markets, but is expected to push into the States on November 2, where it will compete against Boy Erased, Nobody’s Fool and Disney’s Nutcracker and the Four Realms for audience attention.
To stay up to date on all movies coming to theaters, be sure to bookmark our 2019 Movie Release Schedule, and check it often.