In a conversation at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival where he was honored for his portrayal of Queen frontman Freddie Mercury, Malek was asked by The Hollywood Reporter about the recent allegations against the filmmaker.
“My heart goes out to anyone who has to live through anything like what I’ve heard and what is out there,” Malek told the audience. “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.”
Malek said he found talking about his own experiences with the accused director to be difficult because he wanted the focus to be on the film and Queen, but didn’t “want anyone to not feel like they can share their story.”
“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,” Malek told the crowd. “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.”
Malek reiterated that Singer had been fired from the film. The director, however, had been removed from the production for asking to delay working on the film, and not for the abuse claims.
In January, Singer was accused of having sex with four men who claim they were underage in an investigative feature on The Atlantic. Those weren’t the first claims to surface against Singer: He was accused of rape in December 2017 by Cesar Sanchez-Guzman, who was 17 at the time of the alleged incident.
Singer is still set to direct the upcoming film Red Sonja.