Adam Lambert Reacts To ‘Straight’ Rami Malek Playing Freddie Mercury
Rami Malek’s performance in ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ brought him the prestige many of his peers searched for. So, with Malek’s much-appreciated portrayal of Freddie Mercury, one might wonder what Adam Lambert, who’s been sarcastically critical about straight actors playing queer icons, has been thinking about it. Well, worry not because Variety had all the answers when they asked Lambert what he thought of Rami playing Mercury as a straight actor.
So, upon learning that Theo James had been eyeing the role of George Michael in a possible biopic, Lambert had stated that, for once, he wished to see gay icons’ lives reprised by gay actors. Thus, when asked about his comments, Adam again shared his views about straight actors playing gay icons and whether he liked Rami’s performance.
“My actual comment, my little sarcastic comment on it, was [about] a straight actor playing a gay icon, which I think is a bit different,” said Lambert about his statements regarding Theo James’ possible portrayal of George Michael. “I, by no means, think gay characters should only be played by gay actors.”
The singer continued, “I think that would be ridiculous. I just think, as a queer person, so many doors have been closed to us for so long, it’s a big step forward that these stories are at least now being told, but I hope that in the future, you would also see an out actor be able to tackle a leading role. You haven’t really seen that very often.”
Thus, Lambert was not in any way against straight actors having a go at portraying queer icons as he further addressed the criticism he had received. The vocalist explained, “To the naysayers who are like, ‘oh, it’s acting,’ what about the other way around, are you saying that gay actors should only play gay actors?”
Kristen Stewart, a queer actor, successfully portrayed Princess Diana, a non-queer icon, so sexuality didn’t matter when it came to acting, as Lambert only wished for equal opportunities. He added, “If you look at Kristen Stewart playing Diana, and that was a brilliant performance as well [but] we don’t have that many examples of queer people playing non-queer icons. I just want some equal opportunity, that’s all.”
When asked about Rami’s portrayal of Freddie Mercury and Taron Egerton’s portrayal of Elton John, Adam had nothing but respect and appreciation as he said, “And honestly, Rami’s performance and Taron’s performance were both brilliant. I loved both of their performances; it’s just that… can we just get one? I wanna see one gay icon played by a gay actor. Someday… it’s just a dream I have.”
Hence, Lambert didn’t mean that he hated seeing non-queer actors portraying the lives of queer icons when he sarcastically commented on Theo James’ wish to play in a George Michael biopic. The singer only wished that one day, queer actors would get the equal opportunities straight actors have found to portray a gay icon honorably.
Adam Lambert says it's "ridiculous" to claim that gay characters can only be played by gay actors, but straight actors playing "gay icons" is a different story. https://t.co/vid4Pu4xgu pic.twitter.com/mG0TZ5Dg3U
— Variety (@Variety) January 20, 2023