This week CinemaCon is taking place in Las Vegas and Warner Bros showed off their latest projects including the highly anticipated Elvis movie from Baz Luhrmann. Taking to the stage for a Q&A with King star Austin Butler, the director admitted: “I love biopic[s], this is not really a biopic. It’s really about America in the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s. At the centre of culture, for the good, the bad and the ugly, it was Elvis Presley.”
Luhrmann teased that his Elvis movie will include classic songs, but also the life of The King adapted for a younger generation.
It turns out the story is viewed through the prism of Colonel Tom Parker, Elvis’ manager, played by Tom Hanks.
The director joked of the veteran actor, “He’s a bit nervy and stuff, I had to coach him a lot to get him out of his shell”, before adding seriously, “I have worked with everyone, all sorts of icons and my god, Tom Hanks — the Rolls Royce of actors.”
When it came to Butler’s turn, the star shared how he went about portraying Elvis, the most successful solo music artist of all time.
The 30-year-old said: “The main thing was I set out to find was his humanity. He’s one of those individuals that has been lifted up to such an iconic status that he’s almost superhuman.”
After praising Warner Bros’ The Batman, Luhrmann compared his Elvis movie to a superhero blockbuster saying: “Elvis is the original superhero. He comes from dirt and in a few blinding moments, rises so high, finds his kryptonite and falls so low.”
Speaking with The Project, Priscilla said candidly: “I don’t mean this to be an insult, but I don’t know anyone who could really fit in his shoes. I haven’t seen anyone at all who can portray Elvis. But I heard he did a great job.”
Playing a dead famous person in a big musical blockbuster is prime Oscars bait, so we wouldn’t be surprised if Butler is nominated, let alone propelled to A-list stardom after playing The King.
Elvis hits cinemas on June 24, 2022.