'Rocketman' first look: Taron Egerton dons golden jacket and Sir Elton John's iconic glitter glasses in the upcoming "fantasy musical"
Taron Egerton looks almost unrecognizable from his 'Kingsman' avatar as he dons a golden jacket and wears Elton John's iconic glitter glasses in the first look of 'Rocketman'
We have seen him as the sophisticated spy in the 'Kingsman' movies and now, Taron Egerton is all set - with a gold chain and winged shoes - to play the role of legendary rock 'n' roll singer, composer and pianist Sir Elton John in the upcoming film 'Rocketman'. Named after the hit track 'Rocketman' from John's 1972 album 'Honky Château', Paramount Pictures has dropped the first look of Egerton as the 'Rocketman' singer.
Although it was anticipated that 'Rocketman' is actually a biopic of Elton John, Egerton revealed to Collider that the movie definitely isn't a biopic, but more of a "fantasy musical". "We are making a movie called 'Rocketman' about Elton John’s formative years. 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.”
In that case, 'Rocketman' may be similar to Todd Haynes' vision of the life of an artiste in his 2007 cinematic nod to Bob Dylan 'I'm Not There'.
In 'I'm Not There', a plethora of Bob Dylan's albums and songs were used in order to signify a particular period in the artiste's life. While each character had a different name, they were telling the story of the musician by depicting different facets of Dylan's public personas. With Egerton stating that John isn't the only character who will sing in 'Rocketman', it will be interesting to know if the movie will take a similar approach with its vision as Haynes' movie.
Haynes had done an excellent job in bringing in a variety of actors from a young black kid (Marcus Carl Franklin) to a woman (Cate Blanchett) to play different characters who merge together to make one man, Bob Dylan. While the concept of using songs to depict episodes in the singer's life is common in both movies, only time will tell if 'Rocketman' will be as speculative as 'I'm Not There' in depicting an artiste's life.
Apart from playing John, Egerton has been looking forward to spending time with the musician whose character he has to interpret for the movie. A lot like Oscar Isaac, who brought around the renditions of Dave Van Ronk's 1964 album 'Inside Dave Van Ronk' in the 2013 French-American black comedy tragedy movie 'Inside Llewyn Davis', Egerton too might do something similar with John's tracks since he has been training himself to play the role of the 'Bennie and the Jets' singer perfectly.
Egerton said, "I’ve recorded some songs. I’ve been doing singing lessons. The next step is I need to think about choreography and trying to create some semblance of a performance that is at least reminiscent of him." We have heard him perform in the 2016 animated comedy movie 'Sing', so it can be said that John's legacy is in good hands.
'Rocketman' follows the early years of the chart-topping singer's career and his rise to fame. Its cast also includes Bodyguard star Richard Madden as the singer's manager John Reid, Jamie Bell as his lyricist Bernie Taupin and Bryce Dallas Howard as his mother Sheila Eileen. The film is produced by John himself, and his partner David Furnish, through their company Rocket Pictures. Billy Eliot writer Lee Hall has written the screenplay.
Directed by Dexter Fletcher, who helmed 'Eddie the Eagle' and finished Rami Malek's November 2018 Queen and Freddie Mercury musical biopic 'Bohemian Rhapsody' after Fox parted ways with Bryan Singer, 'Rocketman' is set for a May 31, 2019 release in the US through Paramount Pictures.