In it, the singer reveals that he fought hard for the film’s R-rating. “Some studios wanted to tone down the sex and drugs so the film would get a PG-13 rating. But I just haven’t led a PG-13 rated life,” he wrote. “I didn’t want a film packed with drugs and sex, but equally, everyone knows I had quite a lot of both during the 70s and 80s, so there didn’t seem to be much point in making a movie that implied that after every gig, I’d quietly gone back to my hotel room with only a glass of warm milk and the Gideon’s Bible for company.”
John also writes that some studios weren’t sold on the movie’s more surreal elements, hoping instead for a more traditional biopic. “Some studios wanted us to lose the fantasy element and make a more straightforward biopic, but that was missing the point,” he said. “Like I said, I lived in my own head a lot as a kid. And when my career took off, it took off in such a way that it almost didn’t seem real to me. I wasn’t an overnight success by any means – I’d been slogging around the clubs, making records, writing songs with Bernie and trying to sell them to people who weren’t interested for four or five years before anything big happened. But when it happened, it went off like a missile: there’s a moment in Rocketman when I’m playing onstage in the Troubadour club in LA and everything in the room starts levitating, me included, and honestly, that’s what it felt like.”
Rocketman opens in theaters in the US on May 31. You can read John’s full article about it here.