In new "Rocketman" featurette, Elton John says the movie "had to be as honest as possible"

Elton John‘s upcoming biopic Rocketman is a “magical retelling” of the legendary singer’s life, according to its director, Dexter Fletcher.  But according to Elton himself, while the movie has some fantastical elements, it doesn’t gloss over any of the real-life bad stuff.

In a new featurette, Elton says, “It had to be as honest as possible.  The lows were very low, but the highs were very high. And that’s how I wanted the film to be.”

David Furnish, Elton’s husband and one of the movie’s producers, also appears in the video promo, as do Fletcher, producer Matthew Vaughn and star Taron Egerton, who plays Elton.

“Music, as a young boy, pulled him out of a very unhappy childhood,” Furnish notes. “And that opened the door to a world of infinite possibilities.”

Fletcher explains why Elton’s life lent itself to a non-traditional biopic, saying, “Because of the nature of who Elton is, the storytelling allowed us to totally indulge in fantasy and imagination.” 

On that topic, Vaughn, who cast Egerton and Elton in Kingsman: The Golden Circle, adds, “The story is surreal, but real. It’s a bold piece of filmmaking.”

As for Egerton, he declares, “It’s been the greatest joy of my professional life making this film.”

Rocketman will premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on May 16. It arrives in U.S. theaters on May 31.

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