'The Kingsman' actor has attracted a lot of criticism since he took the role
- Read more: Rocketman: trailer, cast, release date, plot and everything to know about the Elton John biopic
The biopic, which is directed by Bohemian Rhapsody‘s Dexter Fletcher, will detail how the singer was married to Renate Blauel before he eventually came out as gay in 1988.
Egerton told Attitude magazine: “It’s easy for me to sit here as a white, heterosexual man and say I should be able to play a part I want. But I completely understand why a gay actor would feel that this is an opportunity for which they would be better suited.
“The way I feel about it is that Elton asked me to play him in a movie about his life. I am proud and privileged to be playing this person who happens to be gay.
“I want to live in a world where people are excited about playing people who are different from themselves. I believe that there is something inclusive and progressive about that.”
Egerton also discussed his screen kiss with Bodyguard star Richard Madden, who plays lover and manager John Reid in the film.
“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.
“I treat it with the same love, care and affection I would as if it was my first experience of falling for somebody. We shot a scene where we are both naked on a bed and we are rolling around. I don’t really know how much further we could have gone.”
Egerton previously attracted a backlash from critics who asked if the heterosexual star was the right person to tackle Elton’s tale of grappling with his sexual identity in the film.
The Kingsman actor at the the time praised the “inclusiveness” of the LGBT community and said that he feels “more at home in a gay club than at a football match”.
Rocketman is set for release next month.