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Public invited to create official music videos for three iconic Elton John songs

Elton John is offering aspiring directors and filmmakers from around the world the opportunity to create the official music video for three of his most iconic songs: Bennie and the Jets, Tiny Dancer and Rocket Man.

The competition, a celebration of the 50 year writing partnership between Elton John and Bernie Taupin, is supported by You Tube.

"Elton John: The Cut" launched this week with videos of John and Taupin announcing the competition, recalling the inspiration behind the three songs and offering some ideas for how creators may want to approach the videos. John and Taupin released these mega-hit songs before the music video era.

Tiny Dancer , an ode to California, was inspired by the freedom the two men felt when they arrived from England, Taupin said. Next came Rocket Man, their first number one song, which was inspired by a Ray Bradbury story, while Bennie and the Jets was the story of a girl band, said John.

On Jan. 9, the public can begin submitting entries at cut . The videos for each song should showcase different artistic elements. Rocket Man will feature animation, Tiny Dancer will have live action and Bennie and the Jets will feature choreography.

Elton John, Taupin and a panel of YouTubers and industry judges will select three winners. The winning videos will premiere on YouTube in the summer. Winners will get support from YouTube and Pulse Films (the talent behind Beyonce's Lemonade) to fully flesh out their final videos. Each winner will also receive $10,000 to fund future projects.

You Tube creators, Kurt Hugo Schneider (Tiny Dancer), PES (Rocket Man) and Parris Goebel (Bennie and the Jets) will shortlist a set number of entries and present their choices to the panel of final judges who have yet to be revealed.

The competition closes on Jan. 23. It is open to anyone over age 16. For more information, visit

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About the Author

Nedra Rhone has been a features reporter with the AJC for 10 years. She’s written about everything from fashion to food to news.