2022 ‘Elvis’ Movie

Jillian Cordi, Staff Writer

Can’t Help But Fall in Love with Austin Butler

*Warning: Spoilers Ahead*

Elvis Presley was known as the King of Rock and Roll from 1956 to 1977. He grew up in Tupelo and then moved to Memphis as a teenager. Elvis was adored all over the world, with millions of concerts and more than one billion records sold worldwide. People were devastated when Elvis sadly died on August 16, 1977.

On June 24, 2022 Warner Brothers released the Elvis movie which follows Elvis’s rise to fame and his struggles with it. The film is directed by Baz Luhrmann, and it stars Austin Butler as Elvis, and Tom Hanks as Elvis’s manager, Tom “Colonel” Parker.

Of course, when making a movie about real life events and real life people, it’s hard to get every detail correct and still make a movie with a good story structure.
Here are some facts and fictions about the movie Elvis.

1. Did Elvis actually fire Parker from the stage in Las Vegas? No. In real life, Elvis did not fire him on stage in Las Vegas. Alanna Nash, who wrote several books about Elvis, explained, “Never would Elvis have done that.”

2. Was Robert F. Kennedy killed while Elvis was taping the ’68 comeback special? The senator was not shot during the comeback special, but he was shot during the rehearsal. Alanna Nash also states, “The senator was shot elsewhere in Los Angeles.” Kennedy was shot June 5th and died the next day, June 6th. Meanwhile, Elvis was in rehearsals when the tragedy occurred.

3. Did Elvis really go to jail for indecency after a performance? No, this did not actually occur in real life. The night after, the Las Angeles Vice Squad decided to film the entire concert and found out that there was no reason for Elvis to get arrested. The arrest was created in the movie to add a little drama.

4. Did Elvis sing “Hound Dog” to a real dog? Yes. This did actually take place in real life on “The Steve Allen Show” on July 1, 1956. Before this performance, a talk show host by the name of Ed Sullivan said that he would never want Elvis on his show. He told the press that it was “not my cup of tea.”

While many things in the film were not consistent in real life, it really does capture who Elvis really was. Other than the story, the actors were a big part of capturing Elvis. Austin Butler, the actor who played Elvis, actually sang in the movie. Butler said, “When I began the process, I set out to get my voice to be identical. That instills fear. So that got the fire burning. For a year before we started shooting, I was doing voice coaching.” He watched multiple videos of Elvis performing, studying footage of films and concerts to perfect the singer’s voice.

Tom Hanks, who played Tom Parker, “had a much harder time accessing Tom Parker,” according to Screen Rant. It was also hard because his name wasn’t actually “Tom Parker,” and he wasn’t a real colonel.

Of course, let’s not forget Olivia DeJonge, who played Priscilla Presley. She was equally as excited to play Elvis’s young wife Priscilla. Movie Maker explains, “Olivia Dejonge loved getting all dolled up to play Priscilla Presley in Baz Luhrmann’s musical drama, Elvis. But as much as she wanted to embody the glamor of the famed businesswoman and ex-wife of Elvis Presley, she also wanted to reveal the regular person beneath all that glitz and glimmer.” Olivia said she wanted to bring more depth to how we remember women. She expresses, “For me, it was just about playing her not as a normal person, obviously, but as a young woman, rather than this caricature that we oftentimes cement people into historically, particularly women,”

Overall this movie was a great way to understand Elvis and his life through fame and childhood. Austin Butler really did a great job of portraying and capturing who Elvis really was. I highly recommend watching this three hour movie, especially if you are an Elvis fan.