The King is back—or at least he’s coming back to life on screen. The first trailer for Elvis has been released, and it’s our first real glimpse at the Baz Luhrmann film that profiles the life of the iconic rock ‘n’ roll singer.
Austin Butler stars in the title role, and the trailer shows just how hard he had to work in this film: That’s really him singing, and he had to pull of Presley’s dance moves, too. The sprawling film covers Presley’s life and music, and weaves that story with larger cultural changes that taking place in America during his lifetime. In the trailer, we get glimpses of Presley’s childhood, his early experiences with music in a revival tent, his discovery and rise from obscurity, and his path to earning the title “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.”
But the King himself is far from the only important character in the film. According to Warner Brothers, the movie will also focus on key people that influenced Presley on his rise to fame. Two of those characters are his wife, Priscilla Presley, played by Olivia DeJonge, and his manager, Colonel Tom Parker, played by Tom Hanks. The trailer hints that Parker was a controversial figure in Presley’s life.
“There are some who’d make me out to be the villain of this here story,” he says in the opening of the clip.
Butler had his work cut out for him with this role. He received extensive voice coaching in order to match Presley’s iconic singing, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
“When I began the process, I set out to get my voice to be identical. That instills fear. So that got the fire burning,” Butler told THR. “For a year before we started shooting, I was doing voice coaching.”
In the film, Butler uses his own voice when portraying Elvis in his younger days. For scenes that show him in his later years, the team blended Butler’s voice with archival tapes of Presley.
Elvis took over two years to produce thanks to COVID-19 delays. In fact, Hanks, one of the first celebrities to announce contracting the virus in early 2020, caught COVID-19 while filming Elvis in Australia.
The film will premiere in theaters on June 24, 2022.
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