Oscar Winner Rami Malek's Next Project Is... A Podcast?
What do you do after winning multiple awards for your performance as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody?
If you're Rami Malek, apparently you star in an "audio drama." The Oscar-winning actor is bringing his unique voice to Blackout, a serial podcast that centers on what happens following a power grid going down across the nation. Malek has signed onto play a small-town DJ in New Hampshire who's made it his job to protect his family as the world slowly devolves into chaos. People can barley handle it when the lights go out at a grocery store. Imagine their reaction if a power outage on this scale actually happened.
Malek will take on the role of Simon, a character who “represents the everyman, someone that we can all relate to," he tells Entertainment Weekly.
"I think and hope we all have a semblance of him in ourselves, that if there were a crisis like this that took place in our society that you would have a guy like Simon trying to help in whatever way he could," said Malek. "And sometimes he’s flawed, like everyone, but he’s seeking the truth and trying to help his family and society as much as humanly possible under the most dire of circumstances.”
He also described the story as "hyper-realistic," following exactly what would happen if something like this happened in real life. He added that it might even be "quite scary at times," calling it "unique" in the way the story unfolds across each episode. Scary? That reminds us of something else Rami appeared in recently...
But why a podcast, of all things? When there's word of a potential Bohemian Rhapsody sequel floating around and Malek could choose basically any project he wants right now, what drew him to appearing in a podcast? Well, he happened to enjoy Mr. Robot creator Sam Esmail's Homecoming, as well as "original ideas."
"I think more and more people are listening to podcasts now — more than ever. There’s something old school about it, reverting back to stories that unfold over the radio, and there’s that element of this very much ingrained in our podcast, having the radio as the only source of information," said Malek.
So where can we hear Blackout? It's coming Tuesday, March 19. There are two episodes to get you started, and six additional episodes to round out the show that will debut each week.
From the sound of things, it might be one of those podcasts that you agonize over until you get another installment. We're ready for you to wow us, Rami!