Queen’s ‘News of the World’ album cover was created by the American science fiction artist Frank Kelly Freas (August 1922 – January 2005). Frank had drawn the original art for the story ‘The Gulf Between,’ which appeared on the cover of an October 1953 issue of the magazine Astounding Science Fiction.
Queen drummer Roger Taylor had a copy of the magazine with this cover illustration. The band were taken by the art and decided to contact the artist. Frank, although he was a fan of classical music and had never heard of Queen, agreed to redraw the piece to the band’s specifications. The art was changed from a single dead man in the robot’s hand to include all four of the band members, Mercury and May in the robot’s hand; Deacon and Taylor having fallen to the ground. Frank did not listen to their music before he finished the art saying, “I thought I might just hate them, and it would ruin my ideas.” In the end, he decided he liked their music.