If I was in charge of maximizing Rocketman revenues, I would simply split the difference — for the more liberal-minded U.S. and European markets, I would include the 40-second scene in which Elton John (Taran Egerton) and his manager John Reid (Richard Madden) exchange a little erotic current, but for the allegedly homophobic territories in question I would distribute a version of the film without these 40 seconds.
I wouldn’t feel very good about this, but Paramount stockholders would approve, I think. And gay culture would be in fine shape the morning after.
Guy Lodge sez: “Please tell me again how homophobia isn’t the default position for absolutely everything. Egerton and Madden should refuse to do any promo for the film if that scene is cut. Simple as that.”
Ștefan Iaonco sez: “The problem [always] arises if companies want to distribute films in places like China, Africa, the Middle East. They either go ‘true to the gay’ and accept it [as a] North America & Europe-only distribution [situation], or, if they want global sales, they straight-wash. It’s art vs. commerce.”