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FILE - In this Sept. 2, 2013 file photo, actor Tom Hardy poses for photographers on the red carpet for the film Locke at the 70th edition of the Venice Film Festival held from Aug. 28 through Sept. 7, in Venice, Italy. Hardy will play Elton John in a biopic titled Rocketman. Focus Features announced Hardy s casting as the iconic piano man on Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013.
NEW YORK—Tom Hardy will play Elton John in a biopic titled "Rocketman."

Focus Features announced Hardy's casting as the iconic piano man on Wednesday. The film is planned to begin shooting late next year.

The 36-year-old British actor is well respected for his wide-ranging talent, but his brawny, tattooed frame makes him an unconventional choice. Hardy is most famous for playing the terrorist Bane in "The Dark Knight Rises." He has showcased a muscled masculinity in films like "Warrior," "Lawless" and "Bronson."

"Rocketman" is being made with the cooperation of the 66-year-old John, who's an executive producer on the film.