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Tom Hardy had been making a name for himself around Hollywood for playing tough guys, but the British actor is going in a new direction. He has officially been cast in Rocketman, a long-gestating biopic of singer Elton John.
The news was first confirmed by HitFix, the same site that reported back in May that Hardy was being considered for the gig. Focus Features, confirmed to HitFix that Hardy has officially been cast after its lengthy casting search.
After that, there was a long stretch without any news on the project, until the project was put up for sale at the Cannes Film Market in May. Michael Gracey is still directing and Lee Hall (Billy Elliot, War Horse) has penned the script.
Rocketman will be focused on the prime of John’s career, beginning with his rise in the 1970s to the 1980s. John will record new versions of his hits for the film’s soundtrack. Those hits include “Crocodile Rock,” “Saturday Night’s All Right For Fighting,” “Bennie and the Jets,” “Rocketman” and others.
The executive producers are Steve Hamilton Shaw and David Furnish of Rocket Pictures, John, Lawrence Bender for AI Film, Len Blavatnik, AI Film CEO Aviv Giladi and Focus CEO Peter Schlessel.
“Tom is a stellar talent who will add extraordinary depth and nuance in bringing Elton’s story,” Shaw said in a statement to HitFix. "We are excited to have such a gifted actor on board, and equally excited to be in the hands of Peter Schlessel and the entire Focus Features team."
Hardy recently played Bane in The Dark Knight Rises and has appeared in films like Lawless and Warrior. His next film is Animal Rescue with Noomi Rapace.
image: Photo by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images for BFI/image.net