Baz Luhrmann and Tom Hanks talk about Hanks’ Colonel Parker in ‘Elvis

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Filmmaker Baz Luhrmann, Tom Hanks and Austin Butler are very excited about the release of the upcoming biopic ‘Elvis’. Hollywood actor Austin Butler is playing the titular role, Baz Luhrmann is directing it and prolific actor Tom Hanks is essaying the role of Colone Parker, the Dutch music businessman and manager of Hollywood’s iconic ‘King of Rock ‘N’ Roll’.

Ahead of the movie’s release, filmmaker Luhrmann and Tom Hanks spoke about the Hanks’ casting as Colonel Parker. Luhrmann shared that he had never worked with Tom Hanks before and so the fact that Hanks immediately said yes to the part was a pleasant surprise to him.

The movie explores the music and life of Elvis Presley (Austin Butler) through the perspective of Presley’s complicated relationship with his manager Parker (Tom Hanks) who illegally moved to the States when he was twenty years old and changed his name so he could claim that he was born and bred in America.

As reported by TOI, speaking about casting Hanks, Luhrmann said, “I’d never worked with Tom previously, but I just told him the story and before I even got to the video, I’d brought along to show him what I had in mind, he said, ‘Well, if you want me, I’m your guy.’ What a gift!”

The story as told from Parker’s perspective dives deep into the relationship dynamic between Parker and Elvis which spanned across two decades, right from Elvis’ rise to stardom, the crazy fanfare, all set against the backdrop of the change in culture and dissipation of innocence in America.

Besides Parker and Elvis, the movie also showcases the journey of another significant person in Elvis Presley’s life – Priscilla Presley played by Olivia DeJonge.

Speaking about the real-life Colonel Parker, Tom Hanks said, “He was both a genius and a scoundrel. He was a very disciplined man, a wicked smart businessman and a dime-squeezing skinflint, but also a pioneer in a big type of show business that did not exist until Elvis Presley came along. He knew instantaneously that Elvis was a unique artiste, he saw his grand potential and knew that if he didn’t make a ton of money off him, somebody else would.”

‘Elvis’ is slated to release in cinemas on June 24, 2022.  

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