Rami Malek says he can't say much about his experience working with Bryan Singer on Bohemian Rhapsody, but he is saying this: "it was not pleasant."
Singer was fired by the film's studio, Twentieth Century Fox, in December 2017, in the middle of production due to his "unexpected unavailability." Singer's rep told ET at the time that he was focused on a "personal health matter," however, the news also came amid rumors of growing conflict between Singer and Malek, as well as separate reports accusing Singer of sexual misconduct (which he has denied).
During a moderated discussion with The Hollywood Reporter at the Santa Barbara Film Festival on Friday, Malek addressed his working relationship with Singer.
"I’ve sat here and talked about how everyone deserves a voice and anyone who wants to talk about what happened with Bryan deserves to have their voice heard," the actor said. "In my situation with Bryan, it was not pleasant, not at all. And that’s about what I can say about it at this point."
"For anyone who is seeking any solace in all of this, Bryan Singer was fired. Bryan Singer was fired, I don't think that was something anyone saw coming but I think that had to happen and it did," Malek added.
Dexter Fletcher was brought on to finish Bohemian Rhapsody, but Singer still has directing credit on the project, per DGA rules. Singer's credit, however, has continued to make headlines amid the film's success both in the box office and in the awards circuit.
A report by The Atlantic published last week told the story of four men who claimed that the director either molested or had sex with them when they were teenagers in the late 1990s. His lawyer told the outlet in response to the story that "Singer categorically denies ever having sex with, or a preference for, underage men." In a statement to ET, Singer -- who has never been charged with a crime -- called the new report a "homophobic smear piece."
Following the report, GLAAD pulled Bohemian Rhapsody out of contention for its annual Media Awards. Malek also weighed in on the allegations against Singer on Friday.
“My heart goes out to anyone who has to live through anything like what I’ve heard and what is out there. It’s awful, it’s remarkable that this happens, I can appreciate so much what they’ve been through and how difficult this must be for them. In the light of the #MeToo era that this somehow seems to exist after that, it’s a horrible thing," the Oscar-nominated actor said.