Rami Malek called Freddie Mercury a 'gay man' at the Oscars and Twitter is not impressed
Last Sunday's Oscars weren't lacking when it came to drama. There was the lack of a host for starters, and all the chatter surrounding Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper's purportedly "steamy" rendition of Shallow. And then, of course, there's the lingering question of Bohemian Rhapsody - by and by Rami Malek, who went onto win the Academy Award for Best Actor. The film's success at award ceremonies and the box office has left critics and cinephiles perplexed, questioning whether it's possible that 8,000-plus Academy members and satisfied movie-goers have got it all wrong.
But whether or not you have a problem with the awkward cuts, and Malek's objectively bad prop teeth, it's evident that the actor has made one definitive mistake; categorising Freddie Mercury's sexuality.
Malek has been criticised on social media for failing to address the legendary frontman's sexuality or his experience of living with HIV and AIDS. But his acceptance speech - which did address these two issues - proved to be problematic.
"We made a film about a gay man, an immigrant, who lived his life just unapologetically himself," Malek asserted at the awards ceremony. "The fact that I'm celebrating him and this story with you tonight is proof that we're longing for stories like this."
As many people promptly pointed out, Mercury was incorrectly labelled as a gay man, as he also had relationships with women.
"Freddie Mercury was unapologetically himself, as a bisexual man, yet Rami Malek erased his sexuality by calling him a gay man during his acceptance speech. But OKAY," wrote one Twitter user, while another corroborated "It's probably safe to say that HIV/AIDS activsists, gays AND bisexuals *all* feel a little cheated by the chat around Bohemian Rhapsody. Queen are happy, as are their straight fans, which was who the film was aimed at. So, there's that."
"rami malek got an academy award for playing freddie mercury but doesn't know him well enough to know that he was bisexual and not gay, ok [sic]" a third individual wrote.
Some, however, pointed out that the specifics of Mercury's sexuality were never known as he was notoriously private.
Rami has not yet issued comment on his Oscars acceptance speech.