Despite Bohemian Rhapsody’s massive success, Queen hasn’t made any money. It’s safe to say that when the idea of a Queen biopic first began to materialize almost a decade ago, fans of the band as well as its beloved late frontman Freddie Mercury were eager to see exactly what a film version of Queen’s illustrious career would look like.
Fast forward to 2019, and not only is the world aware of what a Queen biopic looks like, it’s clear what a smash hit Bohemian Rhapsody was. With four Oscars to its credit, Queen’s legacy as one of the greatest rock n’ roll bands of all time is arguably more entrenched in the public consciousness than ever. Bohemian Rhapsody currently ranks as the highest earning music-biopic of all time, with a worldwide gross of over $900 million on a $52 million budget. And despite the controversies and apparent rocky road faced to get the film off the ground, everything appears to have worked out well in the end for all involved.
Or has it? According to Cinema Blend, Queen guitarist Brian May isn’t personally feeling the film’s financial success, and neither are any of the other surviving band members. Though May and the rest of Queen were essential in the creation of the biopic, the 71-year-old guitarist says that “we still haven’t earned a penny” from Bohemian Rhapsody’s impressive box office run:
It’s incredible, it’s like a billion dollar movie. I had to laugh actually the other day. Because there’s this thing in the paper saying that we were getting rich off this movie. If they only knew. We were accounting the other day, and we still haven’t earned a penny. How successful does a movie need to be before you make money?
It's indeed strange that the very people who Bohemian Rhapsody is about have yet to see any profits from such a highly profitable film. What’s even stranger, however, is that even someone like disgraced director Brian Singer – who was fired from Bohemian Rhapsody, will likely make something in the neighborhood of $40 million off the film. At present there seems to be no clear indication as to why none of the members of Queen have seen any money off the film’s success. However, May has only an executive music producer credit on Bohemian Rhapsody, which begs the question as to how much actual work he and the rest of the band members did on the production.
Obviously it’s frustrating to not be paid for something that has become such a major hit. If a film was made about Queen, then May and the other surviving band members deserve their fair share. But it’s also worth noting that as far as personal finances go, neither May nor any of the other band members are struggling. May’s personal net worth is well over $100 million, meaning that even without a cut of the Bohemian Rhapsody pie, he’s not going to be reduced to a life of poverty any time soon.
Source: Cinema Blend