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Elvis movie — trailers, cast photos, music, everything we know about Baz Luhrmann’s biopic of The King.

AUSTIN BUTLER as Elvis in Warner Bros. Pictures’ drama “ELVIS,” a Warner Bros. Pictures release.
(Image credit: Warner Bros/Hugh Stewart)

The enticing combination of showman director Baz Luhrmann (Moulin Rouge, Gatsby, Romeo and Juliet) covering the life of the showman-extraordinaire singer/actor Elvis Presley makes the new musical biopic Elvis, one of our most-anticipated new movies of 2022.

From the moment that filming finished, we've been waiting on the hints and clips that Luhrmann shares on his social media channels, to get our fix of Elvis news. Fortunately, there's been plenty forthcoming — from the tantalizing glimpses of the film shown in the ‘first-look’ clip, the behind-the-scenes photos, the soundtrack reveals and comments shared by Luhrmann and some of the cast, more recently. All of which add up to a cinematic spectacle that we’re sure is going to be pretty special.

 When is the Elvis release date?

Elvis is released, worldwide, in theaters, on June 24, 2022. HBO Max subscribers will be available to stream the film just 45 days after its theatrical release but, just like Top Gun: Maverick, this larger-than-life film is absolutely one to see on the big screen.

The Elvis movie had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in May. Luhrmann has a history with the Cannes Festival having shown three of his feature films there — Strictly Ballroom (1992), Moulin Rouge (2001) and The Great Gatsby (2013). Since then the film, along with its cast and crew, has been on a whirlwind tour of premieres — hitting the UK, two premieres in Australia (Sydney and the Gold Coast) and last, but most certainly not least, Gracelands in Memphis, Tennessee.

What’s the plot?

Director Baz Luhrmann has made it clear that this isn't a straightforward biopic. Instead, it uses the Elvis story to explore cultural aspects of American life. In an interview with Deadline (opens in new tab), Luhrmann says “I’m not about lionizing Elvis. I just saw him as the best canvas on which to explore America in the modern age, the 50s, 60s and 70s”. 

The story is told from the perspective of Colonel Tom Parker (Tom Hanks) — Elvis' real-life, rather shady, manager — taking on the mantle of unscrupulous puppetmaster. 

We see Elvis as a child from the poor side of town in Memphis, Tennessee already beginning to identify with the music and rhythms of Black Gospel music and the Blues singers who visit the local bars. The film covers his rise to fame in the 50s and the adoration the audience has for this unusual young man with "suggestive" dance moves (hip thrusts galore), stage presence, raw sex appeal and the voice of an angel. 

Elvis the movie takes in his time in the Army, his marriage to Priscilla Presley (then Priscilla Beaulieu) and his years in the movies as a leather-jacketed Hollywood heartthrob, before his big 1968 televised comeback concert. That concert launched the next phase of Elvis' career — 1970s rhinestone jumpsuited Elvis — huge stadium concerts (always in the US, Colonel Tom wouldn't let him travel for work) and a long-running Vegas residency. It's a huge sweep of history, but Lurhmann packs it all in!

How long is the Elvis movie?

Elvis is a whopping 2h 39m running time. More proof that movies really are getting longer, unfortunately... (we're firmly of the view that the shorter the better when it comes to film durations.)

Who’s in the Elvis cast?

Austin Butler (The Shannara Chronicles, Arrow) takes on the title role. Veteran actor Tom Hanks stars as Colonel Tom Parker (Elvis’ controlling manager) and Australian actress, Olivia DeJonge (The Staircase), as Elvis’ wife Priscilla Presley. Home and Away (opens in new tab) actor, Luke Bracey, plays Jerry Schilling — Elvis’ talent manager and a member of his "Memphis Mafia" (the close-knit group that supported Elvis in various ways from the start of his career). Stranger Things actor, Dacre Montgomery, is Steve Binder — who produced Elvis' 1968 TV comeback special.

Maggie Gyllenhaal (The Lost Daughter, Secretary) and Rufus Sewell (The Father, The Man in the High Castle) were originally cast as Elvis’ mom and dad (Gladys and Vernon) but, due to the delays and scheduling conflicts they had to drop out and were replaced by Aussie actors Helen Thomson and Richard Roxburgh.

More Elvis movie content

Elvis cast photos

Elvis trailers and clips

 Is there an Elvis trailer?

Showman Luhrmann knows how to drag out a promotional campaign and he's been dropping hints, Elvis photos and teaser clips on his Instagram for months. But, finally, Baz Luhrmann released the first Elvis trailer on 17 February.

And... now there's not just one, but two.

Elvis trailer #2

Elvis trailer #2 is a long one. It's setting out the stall for what Baz Lurhmann's version of the Elvis legend will be — beyond the leather and rhinestones — a statement of intent, if you will. And the final line of the trailer, "this ain't no nostalgia show, we're gonna do something... different" says it all.

In this new trailer we get to hear much more of the songs and the soundtrack (whisper it, Butler sounds good). We get to see the tensions — cultural, societal, business vs art, music vs spirituality — that make up the backdrop to Elvis' career. Luhrmann paints Elvis as a rebel, someone who fought to do things his way, despite being hemmed in by other people's expectations.  

Trailer #1

For superfans, there's also a ten-minute video with an intro by Baz Luhrman underscored by Elvis' Suspicious Minds, plus the trailer and an interview with Elvis lead actor Austin Butler... Dig in.

See more

Priscilla Presley's review of the Elvis movie

Austin Butler, who played Elvis is outstanding.

Priscilla Presley

We were all keen to know what Priscilla Presley would think about the movie dramatizing the life of her husband, Elvis. And, following a private screening, she posted her thoughts on Twitter. She had nothing but praise for the director (citing his "unique" vision) and the two acting leads, Austin Butler and Tom Hanks.

"This story is about Elvis and Colonel Parker's relationship. It is a true story told brilliantly and creatively that only Baz, in his unique artistic way, could have delivered."

Presley went on to say, "The story, as we all know, does not have a happy ending. But I think you will understand a little bit more of Elvis’ journey, penned by a director who put his heart and soul and many hours into this film."

"I relived every moment in this film. It took me a few days to overcome the emotions as it did with Lisa [Marie]. Beautifully done Baz, Tom, Austin and Olivia."

Baz Luhrmann, Priscilla Presley and the cast of the Elvis movie at the Met Gala 2022.

Priscilla Presley, Baz Luhrmann and the cast of the Elvis movie at the Met Gala 2022. (Image credit: Baz Luhrmann)

Priscilla Presley has been a big part of the promotion of the film, including attending the Met Gala and the world premiere in Cannes with the cast, director Luhrmann, his wife Catherine Martin — the production and costume designer on all of his films since Strictly Ballroom (1992).

Elvis movie soundtrack

If you know Baz Lurhmann's films you'll know that the Aussie movie director loves to mix influences and styles across time periods and the Elvis movie seems to be no exception. Launching the first listen of tracks from the Elvis soundtrack Lurhmann says: "In Elvis, you'll get classic Elvis, but we're translating some of the music into a contemporary feel with an array of amazing guest artists." 

Three of the guest artists interpreting Elvis' songs for the movie have been announced. The first was Doja Cat with "Vegas" (a riff on "Hound Dog"), then Kacey Musgraves announced (at the Met Gala) she'd be performing the 1961 hit "Can’t Help Falling in Love" for the soundtrack. Most recently, Måneskin and their cover of Elvis' "If I Can Dream" were announced and a video was released.

The full soundtrack list was shared on Instagram. In addition to featuring original songs and recordings by Elvis, the soundtrack also features Austin Butler, Eminem, Jack White, Stevie Nicks, Tame Impala and more. Outside of the three mentioned above, we don't know yet what songs are being sung by which artists.

Does Austin Butler sing in the Elvis movie?

He most certainly does!

Since the film was announced Elvis fans have been asking whether anyone would be able to channel the look, the charisma and, most importantly, the inimitable sound of The King — that velvety, surly, sexy baritone. A question that until recently was still unanswered as we've only heard snippets of the early music In the trailers. But Baz Lurhmann just released an audio clip of leading man Austin Butler singing "Trouble". He says "I feel I haven’t been clear enough in conveying that Austin sings all of the young Elvis in the movie, so forgive me."

Judge for yourself but, us? We're all shook up.

Elvis soundtrack — Can’t Help Falling in Love, Kacey Musgraves

Elvis soundtrack — If I Can Dream, Måneskin

Elvis soundtrack — Vegas, Doja Cat

Doja Cat's song "Vegas" (with a heavy top note of "Hound Dog") was the first song from the soundtrack to be released. Initially introduced by Luhrmann on his Instagram (where else?) and then performed by the singer herself at Coachella — with support from Shonka Dukureh (who plays Mama Thornton in the Elvis movie) —now the full audio track has been posted on YouTube. Listen and get in the zone...

 What’s the title of the new Elvis movie?

For months the movie was untitled and, from hints that Luhrmann dropped, we thought it was highly likely that the movie would be called TCB — which was Elvis’s personal motto — short for “Taking Care of Business”. Elvis even had 14-karat gold pendants made for his closest confidants which were the initials TCB with a lightning bolt. However, Luhrmann kept it simple, revealing the title via a social media post just minutes before the trailer was released. Since then we've been treated to three posters featuring Elvis in each of the decades he was a star — the 50s, 60s and 70s,

Elvis in real life

Elvis Presley with some of the cast of his 1962 film GIRLS, GIRLS, GIRLS

(Image credit: Pictorial Press/Alamy)

Elvis’s career spanned decades — from the 1950s, bringing rock and roll to the masses at the tender age of 21 and scandalizing audiences with his “suggestive” dance moves (hip thrusts weren’t a thing in the 50s), serving in the Army and crossing over effortlessly to star in Hollywood movies he inspired the kind of wild fan worship we see today with BTS and Harry Styles. Despite issues with drink, drugs and food addiction that impacted his touring career, Elvis made a successful comeback in the 60s with a TV special and a Las Vegas residency, before his untimely death at the age of 42. 

A marker of his huge success, Elvis is still the best-selling solo music artist of all time — he’s a more than worthy recipient of the Lurhmann cinematic gaze.

When did Elvis Presley die?

Elvis died on August 16, 1977 in his mansion — Gracelands — in Memphis, Tennessee.

American singer, musician and actor Elvis Presley, 1950s

(Image credit: United Archives / Alamy)

I head up the team at What to Watch, helping to grow our newest entertainment brand. I've worked in content strategy, production and audience development for leading film and TV companies for over 15 years. Always fascinated by digital trends, I'm currently obsessed with FilmTok. You can also find me extolling the virtues of Fringe, Smallville, rom-coms, Wong Kar Wei and Monty Don/Gardener's World.