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'Bohemian Rhapsody' Production Halts Due to Director Brian Singer's 'Personal Health Matter'

Daniel S. Levine

12/01/2017

20th Century Fox has delayed production on Bohemian Rhapsody, the long-gestating Freddie Mercury biopic starring Rami Malek due to director Bryan Singer's "health matter."

"Twentieth Century Fox Film has temporarily halted production on Bohemian Rhapsody due to the unexpected unavailability of Bryan Singer," the studio told the BBC.

A representative for the director also told the BBC Singer had "a personal health matter concerning Bryan and his family," adding, "Bryan hopes to get back to work on the film soon after the holidays."

Sources for The Hollywood Reporter said Singer hasn't been seen on the set since before the Thanksgiving holiday break, leaving producers worried that they'll have to find another director.

The film stars Malek as the late Queen frontman, with Ben Hardy as drummer Roger Taylor and Gwilym Lee as guitarist Brian May, notes Variety. Joe Mazzello will co-star as bassist John Deacon and Lucy Benton stars as Mary Austin, Mercury's lifelong companion.

The 52-year-old Singer is best known for directing four X-Men movies, Superman Returns and The Usual Suspects. The Hollywood Reporter notes that he left the productions of X-Men: Apocalypse and Superman Returns while filming was still ongoing.

Singer was the focus of University of Southern California students, who petitioned to have his name removed from its Division of Cinema and Media Studios after accusations of sexual harassment emerged. The petition earned over 4,000 signatures on Change.org and USC said it was taking the petition "seriously."

The director faced a 2014 civil lawsuit Synger faced from Michael Egan III, who accused Singer and other Hollywood executives of sexual assaulting him 15 years prior. He later withdrew the lawsuits because he contradicted himself in past statements. Singer denied the allegations. As TMZ reported at the time, Egan was sentenced to two years in federal prison for fraud.

Bohemian Rhapsody is scheduled for release on Dec. 25, 2018.

Photo credit: Bryan Singer/Instagram

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