Austin Butler Reveals Measures He Took To Get Rid Of His Viral Elvis Voice

The actor earned an Oscar nod for his portrayal of Elvis Presley — and sparked confusion when he retained the King's voice for months.
Austin Butler
Austin Butler
via Associated Press

Austin Butler is coming clean about speaking like Elvis Presley long after he actually had to.

On Wednesday’s episode of The Late Show, the actor said that he needed professional help to stop talking like the King following his Oscar-nominated performance in 2022′s Elvis.

“I had a dialect coach just to help me not sound like Elvis in that film,” he said after curiously retaining the singer’s manner of speaking for months.

Austin’s new-found voice first came to widespread attention when he accepted a Golden Globe for his performance in January 2023. Many fans suspected that he was doing it on purpose, which his vocal coach publicly denied.

“It’s genuine, it’s not put on,” the coach, Irene Bartlett, said in an ABC Gold Coast interview at the time, noting that it’s “difficult to switch off something you’ve spent so much focus time on”.

But Austin’s speech went viral nonetheless, with even his ex Vanessa Hudgens finding herself “crying” in laughter from memes about the voice.

Austin said last year that although he didn’t think he still sounded like Elvis, the reactions to his voice told him otherwise. He suggested that “all that singing” for the film must have damaged his vocal cords.

This week on The Late Show, however, Austin said that he actively tried to get rid of his Elvis voice after being cast in the upcoming miniseries Masters Of The Air — but couldn’t. Fortunately, he found help before production began on the World War II-set show.

Tom Hanks (right) starred opposite Austin Butler in Elvis and purportedly helped him find a role in Masters Of The Air.
Tom Hanks (right) starred opposite Austin Butler in Elvis and purportedly helped him find a role in Masters Of The Air.
Chris Pizzello/Associated Press

“It was a lot,” he said. “I was just trying to remember who I was.”

Austin continued: “All I thought about was Elvis for three years. And then I had that week off, and then I flew to London.

“And at that time it was Covid, so I’m quarantined for 10 days. So I thought, ‘All right, just pour all this energy into learning about World War II’.”

Austin said that Masters Of The Air producer Tom Hanks had helped him vanquish the voice while they were still filming Elvis together, with the two-time Oscar winner joking that “you’re going to lose your mind” after obsessing over the cronner for so long. Tom suggested that he “find something else to jump right into,” Austin said.

“Pat McCormick, who is a good friend of mine, he said, ‘Well, Tom, find him something to do,’” Austin recalled, referring to an Elvis producer. “And then Tom said, ‘Well, I’ve got this World War II thing I’m working on’.”

The first two episodes of Masters Of The Air are now streaming on Apple TV+.


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