Queen biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” is the king of the box office with a $50 million debut

20th Century Fox

The Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody was the champion of the U.S. box office, beating expectations with an estimated $50 million debut. The film, which stars Mr. Robot‘s Rami Malek as the band’s flamboyant frontman, the late Freddie Mercury, delivered an estimated $72 million overseas, for a worldwide total for the weekend of more than $122 million.

In a post on his official website, Queen guitarist Brian May points out that Bohemian Rhapsody debuted at #1 in every territory in which it opened, while gushing about fans’ reactions to the movie.

“A million thanks to all of you who have rushed out to see it and laughed and cried and whooped with joy with us, as you’ve told us,” writes May. “I’m bowled over by your comments — from ‘It’s the best film I’ve ever seen’ to ‘I cried 50 times’…What we always wanted was for the film to touch people and inspire them. You’re telling us that is what it does. That’s good enough.”

Meanwhile, the soundtrack album to the film, which bowed at #22 on the Billboard 200 last week, dropped to #25 on the tally, while it moved from #5 to #3 on the U.K.’s Official Albums Chart. The album features classic Queen studio tracks, updated renditions of some tunes, and a number of rare or previously unreleased concert performances, including sings from the band’s historic set at the 1985 Live Aid festival in London. The soundtrack became Queen’s 17th top-40 release on the Billboard 200.

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