In a move that has been termed “A sad reflection of the divided society we we still live in” musical royalty and king of pop Sir Elton John has today spoke out in criticism of the editing and removal of homosexual scenes from his new bio-pic “Rocketman” by some Russian film distributors.
— Elton John (@eltonofficial) May 31, 2019
The film is based upon Elton’s early music career, focusing upon his internal conflicts both as a performer and a person. With explorations of his sexual life and relationships being a significant part of Elton’s life, and therefore the upcoming bio-pic. These significant scenes of discovery however have been cut from certain film distrubtors in Russia, leading to condemnation from the producers in Britain and The USA.
In a full statement Paramount Pictures said ” We reject in the strongest possible terms the decision to pander to local laws and censor Rocketman for the Russian market, a move we were unaware of until today,Paramount Pictures have been brave and bold partners in allowing us to create a film which is a true representation of Elton’s extraordinary life, warts and all.”
“That the local distributor has found it necessary to edit out certain scenes, denying the audience the opportunity to see the film as it was intended is a sad reflection of the divided world we still live in and how it can still be so cruelly unaccepting of the love between two people. We believe in building bridges and open dialogue, and will continue to push for the breaking down of barriers until all people are heard equally across the world.”
The news was brought to our attention through a Facebook post from Russian reporter Anton Dolin. Who wrote that “all scenes with kissing, sex and oral sex between men have been cut out… The nastiest part is that the final caption has been removed from the finale.” (summarised and translated in The NME) Lead actor Taron Egerton also voiced his unhappiness today via Instagram, saying “I am crestfallen that the decision was made to censor our movie for the Russian market.I’m even more disappointed to hear about it secondhand today on the day of our domestic release. I in no way condone this decision and feel disappointed I wasn’t made aware and given the chance to fight this move. Love is love. No compromises.”
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Rocketman however has been scoring great reviews across the board, scoring a 5 star review in The Guardian and currently sitting on 90% approval rating on rotten tomatoes. The best review however may have come from Mum’s net, who suggested the film could be the perfect accompaniment to the menopause.
Mumsnet has reviewed Rocketman. pic.twitter.com/sOiNwQHQga
— Mark Aldridge (@DrMarkAldridge) May 28, 2019