Queen earns highest-charting record since 1980 with ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ soundtrack
The Queen biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” has given the British rock group its highest-charting album in 38 years, earning the band both the No. 3 spot on the Billboard 200 and its first double appearance in that list’s top 10.
“Bohemian Rhapsody: The Original Soundtrack” ranked third on the Billboard 200 list of the nation’s most popular albums for the week ending Nov. 13, making it Queen’s highest-charting album since “The Game” spent five weeks at the top in 1980.
Released prior to the film opening in U.S. theaters on Nov. 2, the soundtrack surged 22 spots over last week’s position on the Billboard 200 as moviegoers made the flick among the month’s biggest box office draws and rekindled interest in the band’s catalog.
Another compilation of Queen songs, “Greatest Hits I II III: The Platinum Collection,” ranked number 9 for this week, marking the first time the band has had two albums concurrently on Billboard’s top ten chart.
Formed in 1970, Queen released 14 studio albums with lead singer Freddie Mercury prior to his death in 1991, including five that peaked during his lifetime on the Billboard top ten.
“Bohemian Rhapsody: The Original Soundtrack” contains over 20 songs spanning Queen’s career, ranging from studio versions of classics like the titular tune, “Killer Queen” and “Crazy Little Thing Called Love,” to a handful of previously released mixes and five tunes from the band’s Live Aid performance at Wembley Stadium in London in 1985, among others.
Box office figures for “Bohemian Rhapsody” suggest the film made about $100 million in U.S. ticket sales during its first 10 days in theaters.
Queen last appeared on the Billboard top 10 in 1992 when another compilation, “Classic Queen,” spent six weeks in the top 10 amid the band encountering a similar movie-inspired resurgence in interest following the inclusion of the “Bohemian Rhapsody” single in a famous head-banging singalong in the movie “Wayne’s World.”
“Classic Queen” ultimately peaked at No. 4, while “Bohemian Rhapsody” held the No. 2 spot that spring on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, roughly 17 years after its initial release.