When the trailer for Rocketman dropped this week, it gave movie fans plenty to talk about. There was a chance to spend two minutes and 32 seconds immersed in Elton John’s greatest hits. There were the costumes, which range from ’70s-era bell-bottom suits to fabulously outlandish feathered ensembles to, well, glitter (so much glitter). And then there’s the onscreen collaboration between two of the Internet’s favorite actors, Taron Egerton and Richard Madden.
The two Brits have been coming up in Hollywood nearly simultaneously — the former in the Kingsman film franchise and the latter as Rob Stark on HBO’s Game of Thrones — but, contrary to what we may prefer to imagine, there isn’t some secret society of Englishmen in Tinseltown; rather, the two buddied up on the set of Rocketman.
“I obviously do have British actor friends, but the people I’ve connected with when I’ve met them and stayed friends with them, it never feels like it’s because we do the same thing; you just forge connections with people,” Egerton told EW while promoting his fall 2018 film Robin Hood. “I recently became good friends with Richard Madden…. He and I have hit it off. I don’t know why, I’m much cooler than he is. But I enjoy his company very much.”
Egerton, of course, plays a young Elton John in Rocketman, and Madden portrays the singer’s late manager, John Reid. The gig required plenty of physical transformation for Egerton, prosthetic teeth and a false receding hairline included, but it also demanded a level of training that almost matched his more rigorous action roles.
“I found it to be fairly challenging,” Egerton said of the film’s dance scenes. “Only because it took a while for me to build my confidence with it. I think that’s why you do these periods of training before starting a movie, because the confidence it gives you allows you to forget about your insecurities on set and just focus on being entertaining.”
Egerton was quick to point out that his most difficult film prep came before the original Kingsman: The Secret Service, but his newfound friendship with Madden helped ease the burden of the Elton John-inspired two-stepping.
“A lot of the dancing I do with Richard Madden in the film,” Egerton said. “And we both went through it together because we’re, well, we’re okay but not exceptional.”
Watch Egerton’s full interview above to find out more about Rocketman, out May 31, including how he mastered Elton John’s very particular accent.