Mainstream audiences are mostly familiar with Tom Hardy for his role in Christopher Nolan's Inception and his performance as Bane in The Dark Knight Rises. The actor is about to take on a truly iconic figure, however: Elton John.

The Hollywood Reporter and Variety are reporting that Hardy will play the role in Rocketman, a musical biopic on the singer's life to be directed by Michael Gracey from a script by Billy Elliot and War Horse scribe Lee Hall. It's being made with the singer's full cooperation — his company Rocket Pictures is producing, and John will be re-recording many of his classic hit songs for the film — with shooting scheduled to begin in fall of next year. Focus Features has agreed to distribute the film in what is being described as a "major" US release.

"Tom is quickly becoming known as one of the world's most versatile actors, and like others at the top of their craft, he has proven his ability to transform himself completely into the character or subject found in the material," Focus Features CEO Peter Schlessel told Variety. "We are confident that Tom will embody the physicality and spirit of Sir Elton. This, in conjunction with the creative team led by Michael and Rocket Pictures, will provide the foundation for something that will be a unique cinematic event."