Elton: I'm very thick-skinned
Sir Elton John has insisted he didn't take offence at Stephen Merchant's gnome-shaped tribute to him.
The Rocket Man star's new film Gnomeo & Juliet sees Stephen play Paris, a bespectacled gnome who at one point transforms into a glittery ensemble resembling one of the singer's costumes.
"I burst out laughing when I saw him all put together about three months ago. Stephen Merchant is extremely funny," Sir Elton revealed.
"He said to me before I'd seen it, 'I hope you're not too insulted with what I've done.' I said, 'I don't care. I'm very easy. I'm very thick skinned.' It was brilliant."
Sir Elton quipped: "He's kind of gnomosexual, isn't he?"
The 63-year-old and his civil partner David Furnish are currently celebrating the arrival of their baby boy Zachary, who was born via a surrogate in California on Christmas Day.
The singer is now ready to tackle a more morose subject in his next project: a musical adaptation of George Orwell's Animal Farm with Billy Elliot collaborator Lee Hall.
"It's not an easy task because it's got a horribly sad ending," he admitted.
"The characters are obviously all animals, but I love the thought of that because it's difficult. He's a brilliant lyricist. He's not going to throw it to me until he's finished all the lyrics, so hopefully in the next two or three months, we'll look at that and start writing it."