Saturday, January 22, 2011

Elton's Gnomeo Interview, New EJ Bio Film Planned

"I love the smell of nappies," says proud new dad Sir Elton John, perched on a small stage at the Four Seasons, Los Angeles.

Sir Elton is flanked by actors Emily Blunt and James McAvoy and director Kelly Asbury.
Ostensibly, the press conference is a chance to elaborate on the new Disney animation Gnomeo and Juliet, based on the tragic Shakespearean tale. And to field questions on the score, comprised of classic and original songs by Sir Elton.

Lapping up the spotlight, the music legend is refreshingly forthcoming as he is pounded with rapid fire questions, mostly about everything but the film.

Speaking of his and baby son, Zachary, who he parents with long-time partner David Furnish (Gnomeo and Juliet producer), he reveals: "Surprisingly, it's been very relaxing because this little soul that your feeding, changing, bathing and telling bedtime stories to is a blank canvas.
"And all it needs is love and nurturing. When he gets to talking and running around, I will probably feel a little different."

And there's more he wants to divulge.

"I'd just like to make a really great film about my life story. We have a great script already by Lee Hall who wrote Billy Elliott.

"Obviously, it's not going to be your normal, run of the mill film because my life has kind of been crazy.And I think it's important to do a kind of surrealistic take on my life."

And when contemplating his future?

"I don't know what's around the corner and that's kind of the way I like it. You never know what gig you're going to be offered.
"For example, in 1990 if you had told me that in 1993 I would be writing a song about a f***in' warthog (The Lion King), I would have said you are out of your f***in' mind."

On being a first-time executive producer (Gnomeo and Juliet): "There have been a couple of times when the movie was in danger of being dropped by the studio and we've had to make a phone call to the head of studio to say 'we can't lose the film now'."

He explains that his job was to rally the team when there was no other means of communicating with the studio.

"Here I am, wonder poof," he exclaims, adopting a super hero voice.

No, he wasn't bullied at school because he was larger than the other kids, his eyesight was mended with surgery so he simply wears dark glasses to make him look 'moody", he loathes gardening and he doesn't actually know Kate (Middleton) and (Prince) William so won't be singing at their wedding.

"They will probably get Barry Manilow to sing. Someone younger and more attractive."


Toronto film-maker David Furnish has confirmed that he and British husband Elton John's month-old son, Zachary, born via a surrogate mother on Christmas Day, is coming to Canada soon for a visit.

And he's getting legal papers for Canada too.

"Zachary’s going to be going home soon and his Canadian passport application has been filed," said Furnish of their son who currently only has a British passport.

Furnish and John made the comments as they promoted their new film, Gnomeo And Juliet in 3D, an animated, comedic take on Romeo and Juliet starring the voices of James McAvoy and Emily Blunt in the starring roles.

Furnish and John were the movie's producer and executive producer, respectively, and John's back catalogue along with some new material provide the film's soundtrack.

Furnish said he was proud of the fact that Toronto's Starz Animation worked on the film and that Toronto-based singer-songwriter Nelly Furtado is one of two duet partners with John on soundtrack. The other is Lady Gaga.

"Blame Canada!" sang John, at the press conference, alluding to the South Park's Bigger Longer & Uncut song.

John also confirmed he will be in Toronto to attend the Canadian premiere of his hit musical, Billy Elliot, March 1.

- Toronto Sun

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