Warner Bros. has released the first trailer for Baz Luhrmann’s “Elvis.” The film biopic explores the complicated life of the King of Rock (Austin Butler), whose iconic music helped reshape the cultural landscape. While some biopics choose to focus on specific events, the titular film seems to take an all-encompassing approach by chronicling the legend’s life from beginning to end. As such, the film tells the story of the rise and fall of Elvis, whose life was consumed by fame and paid the ultimate price for it.
In the trailer, we overhear Elvis asking if we are born with destiny or if it comes knocking at our door. Then, inspired by the power of Gospel music, Elvis takes it upon himself to write his destiny by adapting the music genre for his benefit. The result is a budding musician who would eventually become the King of Rock playing at sold-out venues across the country. And while some people may have mocked Elvis’ looks, they, especially the women, couldn’t help but be enthralled by his voice and gyrating hips. And that hold he had over the audience caught the attention of his soon-to-be manager (played by Oscar-winner Tom Hanks).
Of course, one can’t tell Elvis’ life as a rock legend without exploring the effect his music had on America. Many perceived the rocker’s songs and on-stage performances as too controversial and dangerous to impressionable American youth. Politicians didn’t want to have anything to do with him. And radio stations wouldn’t play his music because they believed his songs were the “Devil’s music.” And as Elvis’ career was on the rise, America was also experiencing great tragedies like the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. While Elvis’ manager believes it has nothing to do with them, Elvis believes otherwise.
But the trailer also sees Elvis come to grips with his mortality and recognizing that he has to do all that he can with the time that he’s given.
Here’s the official plot synopsis for “Elvis:”
From Oscar-nominated visionary filmmaker Baz Luhrmann comes Warner Bros. Pictures’ drama “Elvis,” starring Austin Butler and Oscar winner Tom Hanks. The film explores the life and music of Elvis Presley (Butler), seen through the prism of his complicated relationship with his enigmatic manager, Colonel Tom Parker (Hanks). The story delves into the complex dynamic between Presley and Parker, spanning over 20 years, from Presley’s rise to fame to his unprecedented stardom, against the backdrop of the evolving cultural landscape and loss of innocence in America. Central to that journey is one of the most significant
and influential people in Elvis’ life, Priscilla Presley (Olivia DeJonge).
Starring alongside Hanks and Butler, award-winning theatre actress Helen Thomson (“Top of the Lake: China Girl,” “Rake”) plays Elvis’s mother, Gladys, Richard Roxburgh (“Moulin Rouge!” “Breath,” “Hacksaw Ridge”) portrays Elvis’s father, Vernon, and DeJonge (“The Visit,” “Stray
Dolls”) plays Priscilla. Luke Bracey (“Hacksaw Ridge,” “Point Break”) plays Jerry Schilling, Natasha Bassett (“Hail, Caesar!”) plays Dixie Locke, David Wenham (“The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, “Lion,” “300”) plays Hank Snow, Kelvin Harrison Jr. (“The Trial of the Chicago 7,” “The High Note”) plays B.B. King, Xavier Samuel (“Adore,” “Love & Friendship,” “The Twilight Saga:
Eclipse”) plays Scotty Moore, and Kodi Smit-McPhee (“The Power of the Dog”) plays Jimmie Rodgers Snow.
Also in the cast, Dacre Montgomery (“Stranger Things,” “The Broken Heart Gallery”) plays TV director Steve Binder, alongside Australian actors Leon Ford (“Gallipoli,” “The Pacific”) as Tom Diskin, Kate Mulvany (“The Great Gatsby,” “Hunters”) as Marion Keisker, Gareth Davies (“Peter Rabbit,” “Hunters”) as Bones Howe, Charles Grounds (“Crazy Rich Asians,” “Camp”) as Billy Smith, Josh McConville (“Fantasy Island”) as Sam Phillips, and Adam Dunn (“Home and Away”) as Bill Black.
To play additional iconic musical artists in the film, Luhrmann cast singer/songwriter Yola as Sister Rosetta Tharpe, model Alton Mason as Little Richard, Austin, Texas native Gary Clark Jr. as Arthur Crudup, and artist Shonka Dukureh as Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton.
Directed by Luhrmann, using a script written by himself and Sam Bromell, Craig Pearce and Jeremy Doner, with a story by Luhrmann and Doner, “Elvis” is scheduled for a June 24, 2022 release.