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What Freddie Mercury Really Thought About That Iconic Wayne's World Scene

Twenty-seven years after Freddie Mercury's death, moviegoers were finally treated to the remarkable story of the iconic Queen singer's life with the musical biopic "Bohemian Rhapsody." Rooted in what would become an Oscar-winning performance for Rami Malek as Mercury, the film chronicled the singer-songwriter's rise as the frontman of Queen, which included the recording of several of the group's hit albums, the singer's tragic diagnosis with H.I.V., and the group's legendary performance at the Live Aid global music fundraiser in 1985.

Sadly, Mercury never got to see the impact his music had on the world following his death on November 24, 1991, when he succumbed to the complications of AIDS (via UK's Mirror). He did, however, in his waning days get to experience what led to a resurgence in popularity of one of Queen's signature songs, thanks to the (party time) excellent taste of an actor named Mike Myers on his "Saturday Night Live" sketch-turned-movie "Wayne's World."

Myers fought to have Bohemian Rhapsody included in the Wayne's World movie

Offering a peek into a faux local cable access show co-hosted by metalhead guitarist Wayne Campbell (Mike Myers) and his drumming best friend, Garth Algar (Dana Carvey), the first "Wayne's World" sketch debuted on "Saturday Night Live" on February 19, 1989. It became an instant fan favorite, and following several more appearances by Wayne and Garth, Myers and Carvey took the characters out of Wayne's parents' basement to the outside world for the "Wayne's World" movie in 1991.

The opening scene of "Wayne's World" struck an immediate chord with movie audiences. Picked up by Garth and the show's crew, Wayne immediately holds a cassette tape up and pops it into the deck, playing "Bohemian Rhapsody" as it picks up right at the operatic part. All of the car's occupants sing along, swerve, and bang their heads for the next three minutes until the tune's conclusion. According to Decider, "Bohemian Rhapsody" helped make the "Wayne's World" movie soundtrack a smash hit with 2 million units sold, and even better, resulted in "Bohemian Rhapsody" re-entering the Billboard Hot 100, where it peaked at No. 2.

The irony is that "SNL" producer Lorne Michaels, who also produced the "Wayne's World" movie, originally wanted to use a song from Guns N' Roses, Myers told Rolling Stone for the publication's oral history of the scene. However, the actor insisted that the car jam be done to the strains of "Bohemian Rhapsody," a tune that he and his friends rolled to when the actor was growing up in Canada. 

No matter the soundtrack's sales or the comeback in popularity, the "Bohemian Rhapsody" scene in "Wayne's World" didn't truly become significant until it was viewed by the singer-songwriter who penned the song, to begin with.

Mercury laughed and smiled at the Wayne's World scene, Brian May says

Mike Myers, naturally, had to get permission from Queen to use the song in "Wayne's World," and as such, he got in touch with the group's guitarist, Brian May. Since Myers had the connection, he was able to get May to show the clip of the scene to Mercury sometime in his final days. During a "Wayne's World" reunion on Josh Gad's "Reunited Apart" series, Myers and May reminisced about the special moment. "You, Mike, did get me the tape, a VHS or something, I think, and I took it round to Freddie not long before [his death, and I] went and showed it to him, because you said you wanted to have that approval," the Queen guitarist recalled.

Of course, Mercury did approve of the use of the song in the movie, and luckily for Myers, he responded to the song's use in the car scene in a positive way. "He loved it, he laughed and laughed. He was very weak, but he just smiled and laughed, and said 'Yeah, how wonderful is that,'" May continued.

As it turns out, "Wayne's World" wasn't the only big screen dealing Myers had with Queen. In a meta moment in the "Bohemian Rhapsody" movie, Myers plays Ray Foster, a fictional EMI Records executive who scoffs at Queen's "A Night at the Opera" album, and knocks the runtime and lyrics of "Bohemian Rhapsody." In a meeting with the band and its management, Myers, barely recognizable as Foster, proclaims, "There's no way a radio station is going to play a six-minute, quasi-operatic dirge comprised of nonsense words."

Seventeen years after the 1975 release of "A Night a the Opera" and its operatic single "Bohemian Rhapsody," Myers proved with "Wayne's World" that the song had more staying power than anyone could have ever imagined.