Taron Egerton addresses fears that ‘Rocketman’ would straight-wash Elton John’s life

"He's a gay icon"

Rocketman star Taron Egerton has spoken out after it was feared that the film would straight-wash the life of Elton John.

The biopic, which has debuted to critical acclaim, is the first major studio feature to include scenes of gay sex – depicting the relationship between the star and his former manager John Reid.

But it was feared earlier this year that the scene could be omitted from the final cut, prompting director Dexter Fletcher to deny the claims.

Discussing the fears, Egerton told Empire: “He’s a gay icon. And who are we, as frankly heterosexual filmmakers, to not put that element of his story? How dare we. And that’s not what we did.”

As for the scenes itself, Egerton previously described the depiction of Elton and Reid’s romance as “beautiful”.

“The rawness of that experience, the fear of that experience, but also the joy of the experience of Elton’s first kiss… it’s electric, it’s exciting, your stomach is doing somersaults,” he said.

His comments come after Egerton addressed critics who questioned whether it was right for a straight man to portray Elton’s life.

“I’ve approached it wholeheartedly and I hope that for that reason people accept me [as Elton],” he told GQ. “The LGBTQ community has always been about inclusiveness, hasn’t it? Not about, ‘We’re here. You’re there.’ In fact, if you want to come in, come on in.”

In a five-star review, NME’s Olly Richards hailed Rocketman as “a hurricane of imagination and exuberance”.

“Rocketman bursts in a storm of glitter and rhinestones,” our verdict stated.

“If you don’t adore it, you’re probably no fun.”