In a recent interview, Elton John discussed gay sex scenes in Rocketman, the upcoming film about his life.

Rocketman, which opens in the United States on May 31, stars Taron Edgerton as John. Richard Madden (Bodyguard) plays John's manager, John Reid, with whom John had his first male relationship.

The film is being lauded for being the first mainstream film to feature gay male sex. Last year's Bohemian Rhapsody was criticized for “straight washing” Queen frontman Freddie Mercury's life. Mercury was bisexual.

“I'm proud Rocketman is the first major studio film with a gay love sex scene in it,” John told The Mirror. “If I'd left it out, I'd have felt I was cheating people. I'm so glad it's in there because I am a gay man and I didn't want to airbrush it under the carpet. If they don't like it, I understand, but it's part of who I am. That night was a very, very important part.”

John also recalled his first sexual experience with Reid.

“I was a virgin until then [age 23]. I was desperate to be loved and desperate to have a tactile relationship,” he said. “When they tear their clothes off in the movie, that was how it happened. It was in San Francisco – when he is lying in my arms and I'm sitting back with a smile I'm thinking, 'Ah, I'm normal, I've had sex.'”