Who knew that the partnership between Rovio’s ridiculously popular Angry Birds and popular American punk band Green Day would just be the beginning of a crossover between the video game phenomenon and pop music? Well, okay, sure; there was always the possibility if not the probably that that would happen, considering the way that both the video game and music industries work, but did you really think that the second instance of the crossover would be the introduction of a new character based upon a long-dead performer?
The newest member of the Angry Birds family is Freddie, a bright yellow bird that bears a distinctive mustache. If he seems a little familiar, then that’s intentional; the character – who is being described as an “honorary” addition to the ranks of Rovio’s less-than-pleased avian cast, and isn’t expected to appear in any incarnation of the game at this time – was created for a special video to promote 2012’s third annual Freddie For A Day event, and based very clearly on the Freddie who gave the fundraising event its name: Queen frontman Freddie Mercury.
Freddie For A Day sees members of the public spend September 5th – Mercury’s birthday – dressed as the flamboyant singer, with friends and family sponsoring the day of pop-star-drag to raise money and awareness of AIDS and HIV research. Mercury died in 1991 from complications relating to AIDS and HIV, and the money raised from the day’s shenanigans go to the Mercury Phoenix Trust, set up after his death.
The short cartoon sees Freddie the Angry Bird not only sees the new bird speed through the surroundings on his bicycle (Appropriately, the animation includes a snatch of the Queen song “Bicycle Race”), but also face off against one of the evil green pigs who can usually be seen sneering or laughing at the birds during the games. Suffice to say, things go slightly differently when faced with this new addition to the cast. As well as the video, the character will appear on a limited-edition T-Shirt available through the Angry Birds online store that will feature the new character alongside the more familiar other characters from the popular game (All proceeds from the sales of the T-Shirt will go to the Mercury Phoenix Trust, of course).
According to Rovio’s Chief Marketing Officer Peter Vesterbacka, “Freddie for a Day is such a great way to honor Freddie’s fun and flamboyant spirit while delivering an important message, and we’re delighted to be supporting them in our own Angry Birds style. Queen’s music has endured for a reason, because its creativity and contagious fun appeals to fans of all ages, and we’re happy to help keep Freddie’s memory and music alive for new generations of fans.”
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