When a ‘hologram’ version of Tupac Shakur stepped out onto the Coachella festival stage last month, it was generally assumed that Freddie Mercury wouldn’t be too far behind, thanks to the surviving members of Queen’s stunning lack of respect for their own legacy.
Although Roger Taylor recently said that he’d not want to perform with a 3D animation of his band’s late frontman himself, he added: “Were somebody [else] to use a hologram of Freddie I would have no objection”. And that somebody else turned out to be, er, Brian May, who revealed last night, ahead of a special tenth anniversary performance of the band’s West End show ‘We Will Rock You’, that Freddie would be making his debut appearance in the musical.
Speaking to the BBC, May said ahead of the special anniversary show: “People will come out saying, ‘did we actually see Freddie?’”
Noting that comparisons with Tupac’s recent onstage return were likely, May added that this had been planned for sometime, and used different technology to that used to resurrect the rapper. He continued: “It’s a little unfortunate they did that thing with Tupac, as we’ve been trying to make Freddie appear on the stage for quite a while. [That particular technique] is something we’ve looked at ourselves, but I think probably for a show that runs eight shows a week it’s not really quite practical”.
People indeed did come out saying “did we actually see Freddie”, though not due to amazement at the spectacle. It seems there’s some dispute over whether the special effect happened or not. However, May and Taylor did definitely perform with the cast in front of an audience which included Kylie Minogue, Robert De Niro, Bill Oddie and Mercury’s family.
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