DUBAI: Rami Malek has won the Actor in a Leading Role Oscar for his role as iconic singer Freddie Mercury in one of the Academy Award’s big winners, “Bohemian Rhapsody.”
Malek, who was born to Egyptian immigrant parents in Los Angeles, took to the stage to thank his family, and tell his mother that he loves her.
“I am the son of immigrants from Egypt, I’m a first generation American,” he said in his acceptance speech, before thanking those who believed in him and adding, “this is something I will treasure for the rest of my life.”
“I may not have been the obvious choice but I guess it worked out,” the actor said to a room full of laughs, before he thanked Queen and said he was “forever in your debt.”
"I am the son of immigrants from Egypt. I'm a first-generation American." Best Actor winning Rami Malek makes a call for diversity in movie storytelling in his #Oscars speech pic.twitter.com/BlA4gXxRce
— MTV NEWS (@MTVNEWS) February 25, 2019
After his Oscar moment on stage, Malek tumbled inside the auditorium, and was checked by a medical personnel.
He appeared fine when he came backstage to answer reporters' questions.
Malek says, "The fact that I have this in my hand right now is beyond my expectation that myself or perhaps my family ever could have had," he said, clutching his Oscar backstage.
Before his big win and during the commercial break after “Bohemian Rhapsody” won Oscars for sound editing and sound mixing, Malek ran from his front-row seat to congratulate the real-life members of Queen who also opened the show with a rousing performace, The Associated Press reported.
Sitting several rows back were guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor when Malek, who played their late lead singer Freddie Mercury, raced over to embrace them.
Malek, 37, has been hugely deferential to his collaborators throughout the process. And when Arab News previously spoke to Malek about his potential win, he remained as respectful as ever.
“I want to say thank you to the Academy for recognizing the work of so many from the cast and crew who made all of this possible, I’m beyond grateful to Graham King, Denis O’Sullivan, 20th Century Fox, New Regency and to Brian May, Roger Taylor and Queen,” Malek told Arab News.
Malek’s transformative performance has helped bring Mercury to life for a new generation of fans, and, in his eyes, his award wins and nominations are a testament to Mercury’s enduring popularity.
“I have absolutely treasured playing Freddie Mercury and I am so profoundly humbled and thrilled to honor him this way,” Malek said.
Malek has already won the best actor awards at both the BAFTAs and the Golden Globes for his role in “Bohemian Rhapsody.”
Watch the trailer of the film: