Just as the ovation surrounding the Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody is starting to die down – if only temporarily – after two Golden Globe awards (Rami Malek won the Globe for Best Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama, the film took home the Best Motion Picture award and Bohemian Rhapsody has also been nominated for five Oscars) another legend’s rise to fame is being released in cinemas this year.
Queer icon, Elton John’s musical biopic, Rocketman, is set to hit movie theatres in the US at the end of May, and it’s been a long time coming. John already announced that he was developing a biopic about himself in 2012. Over the years, Justin Timberlake and Tom Hardy were mentioned as possible candidates for lead role of Elton John, but when filming did eventually start last year, it was Taron Egerton (known for roles in Kingsman: The Secret Service and Kingsman: The Golden Circle) who was ultimately chosen.
Rocketman (from Elton John’s 1972 hit of the same name) will tell the story of Elton John’s formative years as a prodigy at the Royal Academy of Music, and will also look at his musical partnership with Bernie Taupin – played by Billy Elliot star, Jamie Bell – the lyricist responsible for many of John’s greatest hits. Elton John’s personal struggles with depression, substance abuse and his budding sexuality will also be depicted in the film.
Speaking to Collider, Egerton explains that although Rocketman is being touted as a biopic about Elton John’s formative years, it is more than just a historical account.
“Everyone thinks it’s a biopic. It isn’t. It’s a fantasy musical so it’s actually his songs used to express important beats in his life at emotional moments. He’s not the only character that sings. It’s going to be fun.”
Listen to our discussion about Rocketman on the GaySA Radio movie club on Friday, 25 January, and whet your appetite for this film, set to grace our screens later this year.