A new animated music video for Freddie Mercury’s 1985 track Love Me Like There’s No Tomorrow has been created by directors Esteban Bravo and Beth David for Universal Music in the hopes of honouring the singer’s life and legacy on what would have been his 73rd birthday, also bringing awareness to the fight against AIDS.
It is launched in conjunction with the Mercury Phoenix Trust, a charity set up after Mercury’s tribute concert in 1992 by the remaining members of Queen and their manager Jim Beech to tackle AIDS worldwide.
The emotive film tells the love story of two anthropomorphised white blood cells, one of whom becomes infected with the AIDS virus. The characters first take the form of outlined, globular beings, dancing fluidly in the bloodstream. At points, they become more real, intertwined under a glittering disco ball and in turn, it is utterly beautiful and devastating at the same time.
“We wanted to tell a story that was relevant to Freddie’s life, but not explicitly about him,” Esteban and Beth explain in a statement. "The AIDS crisis of the 1980s is a huge part of LGBTQI+ history, and it’s something that we knew needed to be handled with care. It’s a fine line to walk between shedding light on a subject, and perpetuating a stigma, and we were cautious not to lean into tropes and stereotypes that might hurt the modern understanding of the AIDS virus, rather than help it.
“In researching the HIV/AIDS virus and the way it affects the body’s immune system, we were inspired to take a look at the story through a more microscopic lens,” explain the directors. “It’s a love story between two white blood cells, one of which has become infected by the virus. This perspective gave us a more direct visual representation of our conflict, which allowed us to explore the more nuanced struggles the characters face in their relationship with each other, their perceptions of themselves, and society’s perception, bias, and neglect of them.”
The directors later add: “The LGBT+ community fought for years for the right to proper research and healthcare, and because of that fight, millions of lives have been saved. We wanted to celebrate that victory. Through perseverance, strength, and love, our characters not only survive, but live long, healthy lives together.”
The directorial duo are best known for their film In a Heartbeat, an animated short about two young boys falling in love.
Universal Music Group’s Dave Rocco commented on the new video: “In speaking with Jim Beach about Love Me Like There’s No Tomorrow, we knew this piece had to be made in Freddie’s image: honest, brave and, most of all, beautiful. We wanted to tell a story not of two men, but rather of a connection and the ineffable power love has in conquering incomprehension and fear. It is a reflection of the thread that runs throughout Freddie’s oeuvre. It is what made him ‘never boring’, and part of why his magic lives on.”
Love Me Like There’s No Tomorrow is taken from Never Boring, a collection of Freddie Mercury’s solo work being released on 11 October 2019 by Universal Music Group, Hollywood Records and Mercury Records.