Production on the new Freddie Mercury biopic has been stalled after director Bryan Singer failed to return to set after the Thanksgiving break. With Bryan Singer missing, stories of trouble on the film’s set have begun to circulate.
Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that Fox halted production due to the “unexpected unavailability” of Singer. “Twentieth Century Fox Film has temporarily halted production on Bohemian Rhapsody due to the unexpected unavailability of Bryan Singer,” reads Fox’s full statement.
In a statement to the BBC, the director’s team says his absence is due to “a personal health matter concerning Bryan and his family.”
But THR reports that trouble on set may be the real reason behind his disappearing act, reporting:
“However, sources say that filming on the biopic has not been easy. For example, insiders tell THR that Singer has repeatedly clashed with his star, Malek. Another source has said that a cinematographer had to step in and direct during a previous ‘non-showing.'”
This is not first time Bryan Singer missing has happened during a production. He momentarily vanished during the shooting of X-Men: Apocalypse and during Superman Returns.
Singer, also the director of The Usual Suspects, has long had accusations of child sex abuse hover over him — though, it should be said, much fewer formal accusations under the law. The director, who once told Out magazine that he is “quite bisexual,” was the subject of a lawsuit in 1997 alleging the film forced three minors to shower nude for Apt Pupil. The Los Angeles district attorney declined to file criminal charges, and the civil lawsuit was dismissed for lack of evidence.
In 2014, Singer was one of four Hollywood insiders accused of involvement in a child sex ring. Michael Egan accused Singer, network exec Garth Ancier, former DisneyTV president and Digital Entertainment Network exec David Neuman and TV writer Gary Goddard of several charges, including drugging, groping and raping him. Egan claimed the men preyed on young actors and capitalized on their hopes of one day making it big. Singer and the other accused have long denied any wrongdoing; Singer’s attorney referred to the claims as “completely without merit.”
Titled Bohemian Rhapsody, actor Rami Malek is starring as legendary Queen frontman Freddie Mercury in the movie that had been filming in London. As well as directing, Singer is listed as a co-producer, alongside Queen’s Brian May and Roger Taylor, among others. No word yet on what Bryan Singer missing from set will mean for the film.