It’s been a rollercoaster week for Bryan Singer and his film Bohemian Rhapsody. The Queen biopic scored five Academy Awards nominations on Tuesday, including the highest honor for best picture, then a day later The Atlantic published a year-long investigation into sexual misconduct allegations against Singer, including claims that the director had sex with underage boys.
On Thursday, GLAAD has confirmed that it has removed the 20th Century Fox film from its nominees for Outstanding Film — Wide Release. The news comes ahead of a news event scheduled for Friday morning in Park City, Utah, site of the Sundance Film Festival, where the media watchdog group will reveal the entire roster of nominees.
In a statement sent to The Hollywood Reporter, GLAAD called it a “difficult decision” to remove the film. “This week’s story in The Atlantic documenting unspeakable harms endured by young men and teenage boys brought to light a reality that cannot be ignored or even tacitly rewarded,” continued the statement. “Singer’s response to The Atlantic story wrongfully used ‘homophobia’ to deflect from sexual assault allegations and GLAAD urges the media and the industry at large to not gloss over the fact that survivors of sexual assault should be put first. The team that worked so hard on Bohemian Rhapsody as well as the legacy of Freddy Mercury deserve so much more than to be tainted in this way.”
Singer did not direct the entire production of Bohemian Rhapsody, exiting after reported clashes with producers followed by claims that he was leaving his duties to care for his mother who was ill. He was replaced by Dexter Fletcher. Still, the film has gone on to awards season acclaim, picking up Oscar nominations for best picture, best performance by an actor in a leading role (Rami Malek), film editing (John Ottman), sound editing (John Warhurst, Nina Hartstone), and sound mixing (Paul Massey, Tim Cavagin and John Casali). These came after a Golden Globe win for best picture — drama. Bohemian Rhapsody would’ve been a clear frontrunner for a GLAAD Media Award.
The news of GLAAD’s decision came on the same day that THR reported that Singer will continue on with another directing project, Red Sonja for Millennium Films, something the organization nodded to in its statement. “Other films that involve Singer now or in the future should take note of the backlash to The Atlantic story and other previous allegations. The industry cannot let those who perpetuate harms against anyone – especially vulnerable young people – go unnoticed or unchecked any longer,” reads the statement.
The GLAAD Media Awards honor media for fair, accurate, and inclusive representations of LGBTQ people and issues that accelerate acceptance.
THR has reached out to a representative for Singer.
This story was originally published on The Hollywood Reporter.