Why Elton John’s Ex-Wife Is Suing Him for Millions

When Rocketman arrived theaters in 2019, the audience learned some intimate details of Elton John’s personal life and his rise to stardom.

As a global superstar, John is often the subject of intrigue, and fans invested in his story through the film and his autobiography, Me. Both works are now at the center of a lawsuit filed by his ex-wife.

Elton John
Elton John | Rich Polk/Getty Images for IMDb

Who is Elton John’s ex-wife, Renate Blauel?

Renate Blauel, a sound engineer, is originally from Germany and met John when he was working on the Too Low for Zero album in London. According to Vanity Fair, the pair dated for 18 months before tying the knot in 1984. They married at a small church in Sydney, Australia about week after John proposed

Although John said he was bisexual during a Rolling Stone interview in 1976, that didn’t affect Blauel’s decision. The couple never had children and divorced in 1988.

Since then, John has always spoken highly of Blauel in the press, describing her as kind and admitting that he truly loved her. On numerous occasions, John’s expressed his regret over hurting Blauel, including in the Instagram post below.

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Blauel says she changed her identity to escape fame

After their split, Blauel received a divorce settlement and retreated from the public eye. But according to legal filings, Blauel asserts that John violated an agreement to not speak about her, and it’s caused her mental anguish. Attention is not something she wanted.

Per The Guardian, Blauel changed her name in 2001 to avoid being linked to John, and then told her friends she was returning to Germany to care for her ailing parents. This was just a ruse.

In actuality, Blauel moved to a small village in the U.K. and told a handful of people the truth. She purchased a home in a friend’s name and altered her looks — all in 2001.

For years, she lived a quiet life (and with a new partner) until John’s book and the Rocketman film renewed interest in her existence.

Blauel is suing Elton John over privacy issues and mental suffering

Per the outlet, Blauel is suing the singer for £3 million (roughly $3.8 million USD) for breaching their post-divorce agreement and mental health damages such as “recurring nightmares, agoraphobia, anxiety, depression, fear, and has had to relive her past constantly.”

The Guardian reported that her lawyer said they made numerous attempts to ask John to remove the parts in the book about her, and she was unaware that her life would be depicted in the movie.

“Renate is particularly upset by the film which is inaccurate, misleading and insulting. In her mind, the film seeks to portray their marriage as a sham, which she wholeheartedly disputes and considers a false and disrespectful portrayal of their time together.”

John’s legal team maintains much of the couple’s relationship was public knowledge before the movie and book dropped. They also claim they tried to contact Blauel in advance but to no avail.

However, they admit there was a divorce agreement in place. It’s noted she switched her name back to its maiden form for the legal proceedings.

John wed David Furnish in 2014 after same-sex marriage became legal in Great Britain. They share two sons.

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