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David Furnish - Biography

The Canadian filmmaker and advertising executive is married to Elton John


David Furnish smiling posing for a photo on the steps of the Royal Albert Hall
Updated: June 14, 2023
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David James Furnish was born 25 October 1962 in Toronto, Canada. Despite being filmmaker who has worked as producer on hits including It's a Boy Girl Thing and being the man behind Billy Elliot the Musical, David is perhaps best known for being the husband of singer Elton John, with whom he shares two children.

Early life

Raised in Ontario alongside brothers John and Peter by his pharmaceutical company director father Jack and homemaker mum Gladys, David graduated in business from the University of Western Ontario in 1985. He was recruited by advertising agency Oglivy & Mather in Toronto, but requested the firm transfer him to their London offices when he was 27.

David clearly knew what he was looking for, as he soon became the firm's youngest ever Director of Account Services. However, the young professional's life was about to change in a way he could never have predicted.

Meeting Elton

David met Elton John on October 30, 1993, when a mutual friend invited him to dinner at the singer's mansion. Discovering they had a lot in common the duo immediately hit it off and it wasn't long before their relationship became serious. In 1994, David resigned from his advertising position, after finding it difficult to balance work with the demands of his high-profile relationship. 

Filmmaking

Building on his already keen interest in films, David took several courses at the British Film Institute and went on to set up his own production company, Rocket Pictures, with Elton's support. His first project was the 1997 venture Elton John: Tantrums & Tiaras, an acclaimed 'warts and all' documentary about his superstar partner, which he directed. 

David followed this with two fashion documentaries and a role as producer on a pair of feature films, which included hit 2006 British comedy flick It's A Boy Girl Thing. He also came up with the idea for the hugely successful Billy Elliott The Musical, for which he was executive producer of live film. David's production company produced both Gnomeo & Juliet and its sequel Sherlock Gnomes. He also worked alongside his husband on the 2019 Elton John biopic Rocketman.

Civil partnership and marriage

Despite being a partnership regularly featured in the pages of glossy magazines, when David entered into a civil partnership with Elton on December 21, 2005, it was an ultra-private ceremony with just their parents, photographer Sam Taylor-Wood, her husband Jay Jopling, and David's dog Arthur as witnesses. 

The pair later converted their civil partnership into a marriage in Windsor in 2014, on the ninth anniversary of their civil partnership. Christmas time is a busy period for important days in the couple's calendar, as their first son Zachary was born via surrogate on 25 December 2010. The pair's second son Elijah was born 11 January 2013 via the same surrogate mother.

Charity work and activism

As well as spending time with his family and working on his films, David is also involved in charity work. He sits on the board of the Elton John AIDS Foundation in both the UK and the US and regularly auctions off designer items from his wardrobe for good causes.

For more news about David, see here.

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