Elton John won’t be shedding “crocodile tears” but real ones if another certain A-list singer is not able to portray him in a planned biopic of his life.
“Number on my wish list is Justin Timberlake,” John told the Los Angeles Times Sunday when asked whom he wanted to see play him in what the singer-songwriter described as a “surreal look” at his life.
“He played me before in a David LaChapelle video of ‘Rocket Man’ and was superb,” John, 64, said of Timberlake.
The video that propelled Timberlake to the top of John’s wish list was actually for “This Train Don’t Stop There Anymore,” a single off his 2001 “Songs From the West Coast” album. In the video, Timberlake portrayed a younger, “Rocket Man”-era version of John.
That era is the takeoff for the biopic, currently titled “Rocketman.” It was announced last September that the singer would both executive produce and, of course, be the focus of the film.
John confirmed on Sunday that the project, off the radar since the announcement, is still very much in the works.
“We have a director on board, and then it’s just going to be a matter of getting the script exactly the way we want it,” he said. “Lee Hall has written a script — he wrote ‘Billy Elliott’ — and then we’ll start trying to cast and plan.”
John may be so hopeful that he can get his first choice, Timberlake, to star in the film, because he was not successful in getting his first choice for a director.
“We tried to get Baz [Luhrmann], but Baz is so busy,” John told the Times.
Luhrmann is the famed Australian director who oversaw the production of the film “Moulin Rouge,” which John said is how he envisions his own story being told.
“…It’s going to be a surreal look at my life, and not just a factual look at my life, more in the manner of a “Moulin Rouge,” he said. “I just don’t want it to be a normal biopic because my life hasn’t been like that.”
John said another director for the film has been selected, and that an announcement will come soon.
Six-time Grammy winner Timberlake, who has not yet commented publicly on the nod from John, made his own transition from music to movies with a critically-acclaimed role in the 2010 film, “The Social Network,” about Facebook, and more recent appearances in “Bad Teacher” and “Friends With Benefits.”
He most recently signed on to play Dave Van Ronk in the latest Coen brothers project “Inside Lewyn Davis,” a film about the early 60s folk scene in Greenwich Village.