Bafta suspends ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ director Bryan Singer nomination

Director Bryan Singer’s nomination for Sunday’s Bafta awards ceremony was suspended February 7, 2019 following allegations of sexual misconduct. — AFP pic
Director Bryan Singer’s nomination for Sunday’s Bafta awards ceremony was suspended February 7, 2019 following allegations of sexual misconduct. — AFP pic

LONDON, Feb 7 — The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (Bafta) has suspended Bohemian Rhapsody director Bryan Singer’s nomination for Sunday’s awards ceremony following allegations of sexual misconduct.

The 53-year-old was listed alongside producer Graham King and screenwriter Anthony McCarten for the Queen biopic’s nomination in the “Outstanding British Film” category.

But in a statement posted on its website late yesterday, Bafta said it had informed Singer that his nomination had been suspended “in light of recent very serious allegations”.

There was no immediate reply to emails sent to Singer’s agent and lawyer seeking comment. There was no answer from a telephone number listed for his agent in California outside of office hours.

“Bafta considers the alleged behaviour completely unacceptable and incompatible with its values. This has led to Mr Singer’s suspended nomination,” Bafta said.

“Bafta notes Mr Singer’s denial of the allegations. The suspension of his nomination will therefore remain in place until the outcome of the allegations has been resolved.”

The Bafta statement did not give any detail of the allegations.

Last month, US magazine The Atlantic published an article in which four men accused Singer of sexual misconduct, including being molested or seduced by the director despite them being underage.

Singer has denied the allegations, saying in a statement published at the time by online magazine Deadline that The Atlantic article was “a homophobic smear piece”.

Singer, also known for The Usual Suspects and X-Men, was dropped as Bohemian Rhapsody director in late 2017, with Hollywood media reports citing clashes on set.

At the time, Twentieth Century Fox said filming had been temporarily halted in its last weeks “due to the unexpected unavailability of Bryan Singer”, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The publication later put out a statement from Singer in which he said the studio would not allow him time off to “deal with pressing health matters concerning one of my parents” and that his contract was terminated.

Bafta said the film was still nominated in the Outstanding British Film category and that “the other individuals named as candidates in respect of the film remain nominees”.

The awards ceremony will take place in London on Sunday. — Reuters

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