Later this month, the Elton John biopic Rocketman hits theaters, starring Taron Egerton as the glamorous singer.
Egerton, however, wasn’t always in the role of Elton John. Once upon a time, it was fellow English actor Tom Hardy attached to the project.
Producer Matthew Vaughn revealed in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter why Hardy dropped out.
‘I said, “Look, I don’t understand how this hasn’t been made, and if you want me to team up with you, I’m in,”‘ he told the outlet.
Before signing on, though, he revealed he had two reservations.
‘I really think Tom Hardy is one of the best actors, but I felt he was too old for the role [Hardy is now 41],’ he explained. ‘And two, they said the idea was Tom was going to lip-sync.’
That’s when Vaughn suggested Egerton. In 2015, he helped Egerton skyrocket to fame when Vaughn cast him in his film Kingsman. In more recent years, Egerton also proved he had a solid singing voice when he showed off his vocal talents in the animated movie Sing.
‘John and Furnish were on the fence because they had Tom Hardy attached, but when they heard Taron sing, it was like a no brainer. They were like, “OK, he’s unbelievable.”‘
Even Elton John was on board.
Giles Martin, the music producer of the movie, revealed John’s reaction to Egerton’s singing: ‘Elton said, “I don’t think I’ve heard anyone sing my songs better than Taron.”‘
Despite not keeping the role, Hardy’s career is doing fine. In the past five years, he’s appeared in three Oscar-nominated movies: Mad Max: Fury Road, The Revenant, and Dunkirk.
The movie is slated for release on 24 May in the UK and 31 May in the US.