Yesterday, I went to see the new Elton John biopic Rocketman, which charts Elton John‘s early life and musical career. It centre’s around Elton’s days in rehab, seeking help for his long suffering life of alcohol and drug addiction. Through these meetings, he relives his story but that is where the story ends. It doesn’t continue through the last thirty years but focuses on what made him who he is today.
I’m not the biggest Elton John fan. I like his hits and saw him perform live once (in Portsmouth of all places – one of the most violent shows I have ever been to – full of middle aged people who had been drinking all day in the sun and by the time Elton took to the stage they really did think it was ‘alright for a fight’ and many people had to be carried out by security) but I was intrigued to see the film as so many people have been saying how incredible it is.
And Rocketman is incredible. It’s a wonderful story, full of amazing songs (if you aren’t already a fan then you will be after watching this) and beautifully told. But it feels like a concert in many ways, with several live performances of Elton playing in front of thousands of screaming fans. I had to stop myself from applauding after each song.
So it made me wonder, could a stage adaptation of Rocketman be in the works? Elton has previously written the music for huge stage show’s like The Lion King and Billy Elliot, and as one of the biggest names in music, perhaps it is about time we see the ‘real’ Elton John story live on stage. The film feels like it could be adapted much the same was the Carole King musical ‘Beautiful’ was – set around a concert performance and dipping in and out of the story.
The films features appearances from many well known West End faces including Jason Pennycooke, Celine Schoenmaker, Sharon D Clarke, Alexia Khadime, Sophie Carmen Jones and Layton Williams and so it already has ‘West End’ written all over it!
I have no idea if there is a musical in the works but it seems like a missed opportunity if there isn’t. Watch this space!
FOLLOW WEST END WILMA