If there’s a music icon whose life seems tailor-made for a deeply fabulous biopic, it’s Elton John. The life of the legendary singer-songwriter will hit the big screen in the quirky musical biopic Rocketman. Taron Egerton, best known as the star of the Kingsman series, will be stepping into John’s sparkly shoes for the film, which John himself is co-producing. In the first trailer, Egerton is nearly unrecognizable in character, decked out in John’s signature over-the-top style and ’70s glasses. There’s also a clip of Egerton singing and playing piano to the title song “Rocketman.” So, is that really Egerton playing piano?
Well, that might be a mystery for a little while longer. Numerous sources around the production have definitively confirmed that Egerton sings for himself on several of John’s iconic tracks, and if the trailer is anything to go by, he’s a great vocal fit. Egerton himself has been campaigning to be cast in a musical for some time now, after lending his voice to the movie Sing. He told The Independent in 2016, “I’m desperate to do a musical, and I’m trying to find one. Or find someone who will let me do one. I mean, it’s about someone presenting me with an opportunity really, but I’d bite their hand off if they did. I think it’s about time we had some.”
No one affiliated with the production – Egerton included – has publicly made any statements about whether that’s really him playing piano during the film’s concert scenes. When he was doing press in 2016 for Sing, he admitted to USA Today that he couldn’t really play piano, but that’s the last time any comment was made. During the short snippet of “Rocketman” in the trailer, it certainly looks like Egerton’s hands on the piano are lining up correctly with the song, but we can’t know for sure. Movie musicals in general seem to be moving toward more realistic (and sometimes live) performances, so it’s entirely plausible that Egerton learned piano for the role.
Rocketman is scheduled for release on May 31, 2019, so it might be a while before we get confirmation on Egerton’s piano skills. Hopefully it’s not gonna be a long, long time.