The 29-year-old actor was asked by The Hollywood Reporter about the challenges of playing gay love scenes as a heterosexual actor. “For me, kissing a man onscreen is no less appealing than kissing a woman onscreen,” Egerton explained. “I’m not in any way repulsed by the male form. It’s an uncomfortable thing regardless of who you’re with. It makes no difference as to your sexual preference.”
The actor’s words mark a transgressive approach, particularly in a business where actors have been long discouraged from coming out or even playing gay characters. Both Egerton and Rocketman director Dexter Fletcher have gone to great lengths to assure nervous audience members that the film will not downplay the queer content in any way, including in sex scenes. The release of Rocketman follows the wild success fo Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody last year, which ignited controversy over the censoring of Mercury’s sexuality.
In addition to his assurance of queer content in the upcoming movie, Egerton has also become quite vocal about his own experience with the LGBTQ community and his admiration for queer culture despite identifying as straight.
Rocketman hits movie screens May 31.