Thursday, January 31, 2013

Freddie Mercury Biopic. Sacha Baron Cohen Interview.

LOS ANGELES—“I’ve got to hit the high notes. I’m buying those tight underpants,” Sacha Baron Cohen cracked about his coming role. He will play the Queen’s legendary frontman, the late Freddie Mercury, in a film to be directed by Stephen Frears and cowritten by Peter Morgan, both of whom gave us an award-winning film on the other Queen.

“I will be singing,” confirmed Sacha, a little more seriously this time. It was our first time to interview Sacha as himself. In our previous chats, he came fully costumed—as Borat, Bruno (he almost gave us a lap dance) and The Dictator. Each one was a hilarious session. But even talking as himself, Sacha was just as funny.

The Brit’s Borat moustache helped him land the role of the rock god, he joked. “I think that was the main reason that I got chosen,” Sacha said. “They don’t want to spend too much money on prosthetics and [fake] moustaches. That I can grow my own is going to be very significant.”

Sacha does not need to buy tight underpants right away. “We’re in the early days; we’re still working on the script,” he said of the untitled film to be produced by no less than Robert De Niro and Freddie’s former Queen bandmates, guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor, among others.

But Sacha was clear that the film will not cover Freddie’s entire life. “At the moment, it’s more about the… period of his life leading up to Live Aid and a bit after Live Aid.” Cowriting the screenplay with Morgan are Stephen J. Rivele and Christopher Wilkinson.

“The story of Freddie Mercury is fascinating,” the actor said. “He was a really interesting character. He had these incredibly traditional parents, who he didn’t come out to. He had a wife. He was one of the early celebrities who had to deal with getting AIDS in an era when it was a death sentence. He carried on performing—until the very end.

This biopic will only be Sacha’s seventh major feature film. “I can do only what I’m passionate about,” he declared. He enjoys film work so much, he considers it a hobby. “It’s not really a job. So, I don’t work much. That’s why I’m drawn to projects like this one.”

Fresh from his role as Thenardier in “Les Miserables,” where he and Helena Bonham Carter provided the comic relief, Sacha stressed that he does enjoy singing. “I have a gold record award on my wall in England, which I got when I was Ali G… the highest selling English rapper.”

Monday, January 28, 2013

Ukrainian star buys Freddie Mercury's Rolls-Royce

Verka Serduchka Saves Silver Shadow For The Nation!

Verka Serduchka (performed by Andrey Danilko) - Ukrainian pop-idol and silver winner of Eurovision 2007 - became the owner of a Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow 74, which previously belonged to Freddie Mercury.

During the recent press-conference Ms. Serduchka revealed her plans concerning the legendary purchase: "I bought the car not to drive it, but to preserve it to fans of Queen!" She will give the Rolls-Royce to the museum of Queen, that will be opened this year. Before that; Mercury's Rolls-Royce will be exhibited during the show of Verka Serduchka & Band in Moscow (Russia) on 9 - 10 March.

Being the big fan of Freddie Mercury, Verka Serduchka said, that the only things that she will keep from the car are: a box of unused Kleenex Mansize and a perfume which remain from when the car was in Mercury's possession.

Verka Serduchka bought a 1974 Rolls-Royce at auction by Coys on January 12, 2013 as part of the Autosport International show at the NEC, Birmingham. The deal was made by telephone.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Deluxe Edition of Queen’s Live at Wembley Stadium Video Getting U.S. Release in March

The legendary British rock group Queen will release ‘Live at Wembley Stadium’ in a 25th anniversary DVD edition on March 12, 2013 via Eagle Rock.

The 2-disc set captures the Rock and Roll Hall of Famers live at a pair of concerts in July of 1986 — two triumphant performances that would sadly prove to be nearly the last of the group’s career with Freddie Mercury.

One year after their show-stealing performance at Wembley during Live Aid, Queen returned to the massive stadium venue for two sold-out performances on Friday, July 11 and Saturday, July 12, 1986. The new DVD offers fully restored footage of those shows and also features a newly-remastered stereo mix and 5.1 sound.

“The Wembley concerts in 1986 were the pinnacle for us,” guitarist Brian May. “We were at our height band-wise, and Freddie had developed this phenomenal way of dealing with stadium audiences. Being back home in London playing two sell-out nights was such a big, big occasion for us. None of us realized that this would be almost the last time we played together.”

In fact, the group would play just two more concerts before Mercury was diagnosed as HIV-positive in 1987, after which they made the decision to cease touring. He passed away in 1991 from complications of AIDS. The two Wembley concerts stand as a fitting testament to one of rock’s greatest front men at the height of his powers.

“There’ve been some rumors we’re splitting. They’re talking through their a—-,” Mercury tells the audience. “We’ll be together forever.”

The new package features bonus footage, including interviews with May and drummer Roger Taylor from 2011, in which they describe the events leading up to the Wembley concerts and look back on the shows. There is also some rare rehearsal footage from the ‘Magic’ tour the shows were part of.


Queen, ‘Live at Wembley Stadium 25th Anniversary edition’ Track Listing:

Disc One: Live At Wembley Stadium Saturday 12-07-1986

1. ‘One Vision’
2. ‘Tie Your Mother Down’
3. ‘In The Lap Of The Gods … Revisited’
4. ‘Seven Seas Of Rhye’
5. ‘Tear It Up’
6. ‘A Kind of Magic’
7. ‘Under Pressure’
8. ‘Another One Bites the Dust’
9. ‘Who Wants to Live Forever’
10. ‘I Want to Break Free’
11. ‘Impromptu’
12. ‘Brighton Rock Solo’
13. ‘Now I’m Here’
14. ‘Love of My Life’
15. ‘Is This the World We Created’
16. ‘(You’re So Square) Baby I Don’t Care’
17. ‘Hello Mary Lou (Goodbye Heart)’
18. ‘Tutti Frutti’
19. ‘Gimme Some Lovin’’ (Performed Saturday night only)
20. ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’
21. ‘Hammer To Fall’
22. ‘Crazy Little Thing Called Love’
23. ‘Big Spender ‘ (Performed Saturday night only)
24. ‘Radio Ga Ga’
25. ‘We Will Rock You’
26. ‘Friends Will Be Friends’
27. ‘We Are The Champions’
28. ‘God Save the Queen’

Disc Two: Live At Wembley Stadium Friday 11-07-1986

Bonus Features

‘The Magic Tour’ – 12 minute feature containing new interview filmed with Brian May and Roger Taylor in 2011.

‘The Wembley Weekend’ – 25 minute feature from 2003 where May and Taylor describe what went into these legendary concerts.

‘Rehearsal’ – Secretly filmed footage from the band’s rehearsal for the Magic Tour.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Freddie Mercury's Rolls Royce Sets Record At Auction

Credit: Autosport International

Legendary Queen frontman Freddie Mercury’s 1974 Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow was sold for a record £74,000 ($120,000) at Autosport International at Birmingham’s NEC yesterday.

Originally estimated to fetch between £9,000 to £11,000, the car was sold by automotive auctioneers Coys to a Russian businessman through telephone bidding.

Purchased by Mercury’s company Goose Productions Ltd in 1979, it was used by Freddie up until his death in 1991. The car even features a box of unused Kleenex Mansize Tissues, which have been in the car since being in his possession.

“We’ve had a great day of sales at Autosport International,” said Chris Routledge, Managing Director of Coys. “Freddie Mercury’s car received a fantastic response, selling for over double the expectation.”

“Coys always brings an astounding selection of rare and incredibly unique cars for auction at Autosport International, and this year has been no different,” said Ian France, Autosport International Show Director. “The Freddie Mercury Silver Shadow sale illustrates perfectly the enthusiasm there is for automotive as well as music memorabilia and we’re delighted to have hosted such a fantastic sale.”

Cars that featured in the Coys auction will remain on display at Autosport International for the remainder of the show, which concludes on Sunday 13 January 2013 at 6pm.

Autosport International features some of the world’s best motorsport and road-going machinery, along with the stars of the race track, including three-time Formula One World Champion Sir Jackie Stewart, as well as current F1 ace Paul Di Resta.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Two men who admitted hacking Sony Music stealing unreleased material by Freddie Mercury & Michael Jackson, have been spared jail.

Credit: BBC Radio 1

James Marks, 27, of Daventry, Northants, and James McCormick, 26, of Blackpool, downloaded up to 7,000 files, including music by Beyonce.

After pleading guilty to computer misuse offences, they were given a six month sentence suspended for a year.

They were each also ordered to complete 100 hours community service.

Leicester Crown Court heard Marks and McCormick accessed thousands of files.

The hack happened in 2011 but was only confirmed by the record company last March.

The court heard there was a security flaw in the system used by Sony Music to share music with people outside the firm.

Marks and McCormick were not the first to exploit this but they used an adapted programme to speed up the process of downloading files.

The pair claimed they only wanted to gather evidence that some Jackson material released after his death didn't actually feature the singer's voice.

Sony Music has always denied that vocals on some tracks on the posthumous album 'Michael' were done by another singer.

James Marks and James McCormick also accessed unreleased tracks by JLS

In 2010 the firm paid $250m (£158m) to Michael Jackson's estate for a seven-year deal for the rights to his remaining songs.

The singer, who died in June 2009 at the age of 50, had recorded unreleased duets with artists ranging from the late Freddie Mercury to Black Eyed Peas singer

Online conversations between Marks and McCormick were read out in court in which they talked about selling the material, but this never came to anything.

The case was investigated by the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA).

Head of cyber investigations Mick Jamieson said the men "knew exactly what they were doing, and knew the full implications".

"The internet's a fantastic tool for everyone to use, but sadly there are one or two individuals who choose to misuse it.

"The authorities are now able to to identify what you're doing, find out who you are, and come and arrest you."

Marks, 27, from Daventry, and 26-year-old McCormick, from Blackpool, admitted two counts of unauthorised access to computing materials, and were given six month jail sentences, suspended for a year.

More serious charges against the men were dropped last summer.

Speaking outside court, James Marks said he was sorry for downloading the files but was still determined to prove Michael Jackson didn't sing on some tracks on 'Michael'.