Robbie Williams turned down the chance to front Queen because he didn't like the idea of trying to replace Freddie Mercury and taking a pay cut.
The former Take That star revamped the band's We Are the Champions with Brian May and Roger Taylor for the A Knight's Tale soundtrack and the rockers were so impressed they asked him to consider joining them in Queen.
Williams admits he was flattered but he didn't feel he could come close to replacing the Mercury - and he didn't fancy splitting stadium concert cash with his potential bandmates.
"I was doing stadiums myself at the time," he tells SiriusXM. "I didn't want to have to split it three ways, but that's another story... and I just thought I'd save them the audacity of me even trying to step on a stage and be the same echelon as Freddie Mercury. He, to me, is angelic. He's godlike. It was just too scary."
Robbie doesn't regret passing up the opportunity to front Queen, insisting they eventually found the right man for the job in Adam Lambert: "If he wasn't such a lovely person, which he is, I would just be terrified of him, because of his pure talent," Williams adds. "His voice is absolutely incredible. And he's an incredible performer, and a lovely person to boot.
"I'm really pleased when I meet people that I'm just overawed by their talent... and they're nice. It's much better than meeting people that give you a talent hard-on and they're a**holes. You're just like, 'Oh, I hate everything you've done now'."