Austin Butler Will Play Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis Presley
Baz Luhrmann, the director of Moulin Rouge! and Strictly Ballroom has his next major musical project on deck: A biopic of Elvis Presley. And he’s apparently found his Elvis, too; after considering Harry Styles and Ansel Elgort for the role (per THR), he’s chosen Austin Butler for the highly-coveted role.
Here’s Luhrmann’s statement about the news:
I knew I couldn’t make this film if the casting wasn’t absolutely right, and we searched thoroughly for an actor with the ability to evoke the singular natural movement and vocal qualities of this peerless star, but also the inner vulnerability of the artist. Throughout the casting process, it was an honor for me to encounter such a vast array of talent. I had heard about Austin Butler from his standout role opposite Denzel Washington in The Iceman Cometh on Broadway, and through a journey of extensive screen testing and music and performance workshops, I knew unequivocally that I had found someone who could embody the spirit of one of the world’s most iconic musical figures.
This version of Presley’s life will supposedly be about his rise to stardom; Tom Hanks will play his famous manager, Col. Tom Parker. (You can see from the side-by-side picture that Butler definitely bears a physical resemblance to the young Elvis.) Butler, whose appeared on television’s The Carrie Diaries, Arrow, and Switched at Birth and recently had a role in Jim Jarmusch’s The Dead Don’t Die, will next appear in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. Hopefully he’s good at curling his lip and swiveling his hips. Or can you fix those things with CGI nowadays?
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