He’s “still standing” after five decades in “the bidness.” Now Sir Elton is bringing his story and music to the big screen in the aptly-titled biopic, Rocket Man.
John and husband David Furnish are producing a “biographical musical fantasy” that will trace John’s troubled childhood as a gifted pianist, who rebelled against his strict upbringing, to his transformation into one of the world’s best-selling and most-beloved music and pop culture icons.
They’ve enlisted Lee Hall, who collaborated with John on the award-winning international stage musical of Billy Elliott, for the feature.
“We have a director on board and then it’s just going to be a matter of getting the script exactly the way we want it,” the 64-year-old John said in an interview with The Los Angeles Times on Sunday.
“It’s going to be a surreal look at my life and not just a factual look at my life… I just don’t want it to be a normal biopic because my life hasn’t been like that,” he added.
There’s certainly no shortage of material to draw from: A failed straight marriage and a successful gay marriage; drug and alcohol addictions; his friendship with Princess Diana; his eating disorder; and his record-breaking sales of more than 250 albums and massive world tours.
So who’ll play the singer on the silver screen?
Elton would like to see former boy bander Justin Timberlake take on the lead role.
“I’ve got a wish list of people. Number one on my wish list is Justin Timberlake, because he played me before in a David LaChapelle video of [the Elton classic] ‘Rocket Man’ and was superb.”
Timberlake — who has taken a break from the pop scene to focus on acting — won rave reviews for playing Napster founder Sean Parker in the 2010 Facebook drama The Social Network. J.T. also played the music legend in John’s 2001 music video “This Train Don’t Stop There Anymore.”
Scottish heartthrob James McAvoy, who last appeared in the action blockbuster X Men: First Class, and Sherlock Holmes star Robert Downey, Jr. are also among Elton’s top picks for the biopic.