Butler shines in role as Elvis

Young actor brings enthusiasm to role of a legend

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Raelynn Hughes, editor-in-chief

Elvis Presley is undoubtedly a true musical legend, so you would think no one could ever fill the king of rock and roll. Austin Butler, who played Presley in the new film Elvis, completely contradicts this statement. 

Butler’s career consists of minor roles in Nickelodeon and Disney shows and movies before he got the big role in Elvis but since the movie was released he has gotten major publicly. 

The performance Butler gave was absolutely outstanding. From the look to the way he moved – the facial expressions, even the voice. 

In the famous scene where Butler would be seen performing Suspicious Minds, he brought Elvis back to life when he performed the exact way Elvis did in the real-life performance in 1970. Fans, old and new, went crazy over this. 

The media obviously blew this movie up because of the outstanding performance Butler gave. Lisa Marie Presley, Elvis’ only child, even tweeted, “In my humble opinion, his performance is unprecedented and FINALLY done accurately and respectfully. (If he doesn’t get an Oscar for this, I will eat my own foot, haha.)” 

Though this movie has been a major success since it came out, Butler has always been open about how much this role changed him, positively and negatively. 

After the film paused production due to covid, Butler refused to go back home, and instead stayed in Australia, the filming location, for six months surrounding himself with all things Elvis. He lived in a little apartment by himself and turned it into a “detective scene” as he studied every little detail of Presley’s life. 

By the end of filming, he lost himself and even had to get hospitalized a day after the movie’s release. 

“You can lose touch with who you actually are,” said Butler in an interview with GQ magazine. “And I definitely had that when I finished Elvis — not knowing who I was…” 

Not only did he have trouble with losing himself, but he also had trouble working on the set with the director, Baz Luhrmann. He even mentioned that he, “went home in tears” due to humiliation and embarrassment from Luhrmann and other executive producers. 

Butler believed Luhrmann wanted him to feel what Elvis felt when he first started performing. 

“When we were filming this moment when Elvis first got on stage and he’s getting heckled by the audience,” Butler told VMAN magazine, “I knew what that felt like.”

As well as other actors, Butler went through a lot to produce the performance, but it was worth it because the film is no doubt a future award-winning film.