Bohemian Rhapsody: Who is Mary Austin – Who was Freddie Mercury's fiancee? | Films | Entertainment |
Bohemian Rhapsody may be considered by some to be a superhero movie. In many ways, Freddie Mercury was a superhero himself – large than life and capable of lifting total strangers out of despair simply through his music. The film charts Freddie’s life, and the rise of the queen, up until the 1985 Live Aid show at Wembley.
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The movie shows Freddie Mercury meeting his future girlfriend Mary Austin just before his first run-in with Brian May and Roger Taylor.
In reality, the pair met in 1969, five years after Freddie Mercury moved to England.
Aged 24, he had just finished art college and 19-year-old Mary was working in a West London fashion boutique when they fell in love.
Soon they shared a cramped flat near Kensington market, where Freddie had a clothing stall with Queen drummer Roger Taylor.
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Bohemian Rhapsody: Mary Austin was played by Lucy Boynton in the film (Image: Fox)
While Freddie was both camp on and off stage, sporting outrageous clothes and strutting theatrically, the presence of Mary meant his sexuality was not questioned.
He dedicated the song Love Of My Life to her and proposed in 1973, around the time Queen released their debut album.
Austin told Daily Mail in 2003: “He gave me a big box on Christmas Day. Inside was another box, then another and so it went on.
“It was like one of his playful games. Eventually, I found a lovely jade ring inside the last small box. . . .
“I was shocked. It just so wasn’t what I was expecting. I just whispered, ‘Yes. I will.’”
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However, when Freddie Mercury came out as bisexual, their romantic relationship ended.
Despite this, they remained close and Mercury even bought her a home nearby.
In a 1985 interview, Mercury said: “All my lovers asked me why they couldn’t replace Mary, but it’s simply impossible.
“The only friend I’ve got is Mary and I don’t want anybody else. To me, she was my common-law wife.
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Bohemian Rhapsody: The relationship between them was slightly altered in the movie (Image: Fox)
“To me, it was a marriage. We believe in each other, that’s enough for me.”
After his death, Mercury left her half of his £75million estate.
This also included the Georgian mansion in Kensington, which she still maintains.
Austin also told the Daily Mail that Mercury was “like no one I had met before”.
She added: “He was very confident—something I have never been. We grew together.”
Bohemian Rhapsody is now playing in cinemas.