It’s certainly a kind of magic. A golden year for the three surviving members of Queen means they are richer than the monarch herself.
The box-office success of the recent biopic, Bohemian Rhapsody, has left Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon together sitting on a £445m fortune — so their combined wealth is for the first time larger than that of a rather different Queen.
While the old rockers continue to earn well — each adding an estimated £25m to their wealth this year — the same cannot be said of the 93-year-old monarch. Her wealth is thought to have flat-lined at £370m, according to The Sunday Times Rich List, which will be published next weekend.
The Queen topped the list for the first five years from 1989 to 1994, but the strict criteria used by the Rich List now excludes the Crown Estate and the royal art collection from her assets, on the grounds that she does not have control over them.
Queen’s lead guitarist and songwriter May, 71, and drummer Taylor, 69, served as consultants for the film about the life of the charismatic lead singer Freddie Mercury, who died at the age of 45 in 1991 from Aids-related pneumonia.
The film is within touching distance of taking $1bn in worldwide ticket sales.
Royalties from Queen’s vast back catalogue continue to roll in, with Bohemian Rhapsody recently named as the most streamed 20th-century song.
The success of the film, in which Rami Malek won the best actor Oscar and Bafta for his portrayal of Mercury, has only served to stimulate interest in the band’s music.
May’s wealth is put at £160m in this year’s Rich List, up from £135m in 2018. Taylor’s fortune rises from £130m to £155m.
Deacon, 67, who wrote the hit Another One Bites the Dust, is considered to be Queen’s “silent partner”.
The band’s bass guitarist, he was said by his PR man last year to be “living a private life” in Putney, southwest London.
His wealth is put at £130m, enough to put him back into the Rich List for the first time since 2006.