Taron Egerton plays Elton John in the biographical film “Rocketman.” He describes his favorite outfit from the movie and his musical inspiration.
Harrison Hill, USA TODAY
“We’re dealing with the greatest rock ‘n’ roll superstar who is probably the most flamboyantly dressed rocker to perform,” says costume designer Julian Day (“Bohemian Rhapsody”), who created original “Rocketman” designs for Taron Egerton based on John’s stage style. “And we had to take it even a step further for a fantasy movie.”
Day amped up John’s look with more than a million Swarovski crystals for the wardrobe’s 85 costumes, 60 pairs of glasses and 60 pairs of shoes.
Here are the most dramatic pieces:
This rooster outfit demanded respect and feathers
The idea of rising superstar John breaking down in the confining backstage of London’s Royal Albert Hall inspired Day, who created the bombastic rooster-like costume for the key scene. “He’s saying ‘Take me seriously’ while dressed as a rooster with massive glasses and feathers, looking absolutely absurd.”
The 17th century-esque doublet-and-hose costume features a sequined codpiece, Egerton’s favorite feature, and more than 500 “feathers” – each made from sequined fabric sewn onto leather.
The devil costume was really about love
The devil outfit was designed to depict John’s bad-boy period leading up to his stint in rehab, while conveying that the star desperately needed real love. Heart shapes are everywhere, from the ruby sunglasses to the full-on devil’s wings. The double-knit Lycra outfit was created in the ballroom dancing mecca of Blackpool, England, with 140,000 crystals hand-sewn throughout. Yes, it was exceedingly hot shooting outside in summer. “Taron suffered for his art,” Day says.
Oscars costume party!Get up close with iconic outfits from ‘Black Panther,’ ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’
Elton’s famed Dodgers uniform received a bling upgrade
In his only costume re-creation, Day somehow stepped up the Bob Mackie-designed spangled Los Angeles Dodgers uniform that John wore for his 1975 sold-out Dodger Stadium concerts.
More than 260,000 crystals were placed in every possible location, from the Puma shoes to the hat logo. “Not the sunglasses, but we should have,” says Day. “The costume weighed a ton. When the lights hit it, people had to look away.”
His ‘Yellow Brick Road’ ensemble paid respects to all travelers
Day was literal in showing John after the release of his 1973 album “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.” He went full “Wizard of Oz,” creating a blue suit with ruby red shoes to represent Dorothy, a silver shirt for the Tin Man, a fake fur coat for the Cowardly Lion and a straw hat for the Scarecrow. “Taron even wore an emerald earring representing the movie’s Emerald City,” says Day.
Elton flew in winged boots (and hot pants)
Egerton rocked the winged platform boots, which are based Elton’s actual shoes. “But I redesigned them to be bigger and bolder,” says Day. John liked them so much that Day made him a pair.
As for the gold hot pants (punctuated with striped white tube socks) worn for a scene on John’s private jet, this kind of look actually happened, according to David Furnish, John’s husband and “Rocketman” producer. “Hot pants were big in the ’70s,” says Furnish. “Elton was always embracing what was newest in fashion and pushing up the boundaries of men’s fashions, onstage and off.”
These days, not so much in the hot pant department.
“Both Elton’s and my best hot pant days are behind us,” says Furnish.
Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/life/movies/2019/05/31/rocketman-elton-john-outrageous-outfits-steal-movie/1277380001/