The first trailer for the Sir Elton John biopic Rocketman landed Thursday in a whirl of color and classic hits. Donning the singer’s iconic platform boots and comically oversized glasses, Taron Egerton steps into the role with unabashed enthusiasm. The film follows the pianist’s transformation from the dorky Reginald Dwight to superstar Elton John, in addition to his struggles with addiction.
If you’re spotting the Bohemian Rhapsody parallels already, you’re not the only one. In fact, Rocketman is directed by Dexter Fletcher, who took over directing duties on the Queen biopic after Bryan Singer was axed. Hopefully, though, Fletcher’s forthcoming project avoids some of the pitfalls of the somehow-Oscar-nominated film.
And, for the most part, the forthcoming biopic seems quite different at first glance. The YouTube description calls Rocketman an “epic musical fantasy,” and a large portion of the musical numbers appear to be non-diegetic, as opposed to the strained verisimilitude of Bohemian Rhapsody. It’s fitting for John’s story to be told with such energetic flair. As the film’s tagline says, “the only way to tell his story is to live his fantasy.”
Egerton, best known for his recurring role in the Kingsman franchise, stars alongside Jamie Bell (Fantastic Four), Richard Madden (Game of Thrones), Bryce Dallas Howard (Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom) and Stephen Graham (Boardwalk Empire).
Paramount Pictures is releasing the film on May 31. Watch the trailer for Rocketman and listen to Paste archival audio of John performing the beloved tune circa 1986 below.