Iconic Australian director Baz Luhrmann is releasing a biopic about the infamous King of Rock n’ Roll – Elvis Presley. We can only hope, amidst all the worldly chaos, that we won’t be waiting too long.
I must have been living under a rock. A mere couple weeks ago, when Tom Hanks tested positive for COVID-19, I saw a glimmering light in The Sydney Morning Herald headline. I thought it interesting that he was here vacationing in the great Down Under, but I had absolutely no idea that an Elvis Presley biopic was underway. To be directed by none other than iconic Aussie director, Baz Luhrmann!
Now, this upcoming film has been discussed prior to my knowledge of it, but being a long-time fan of The King, I felt duped. How did I not know this project was taking place? It took a devastating headline, broadcasting upsetting news, for me to notice. In that moment, I was removed from the virus bubble and able to get excited over something in our, hopefully not too far, future.
The biopic, produced by Warner Bros and written and directed by Luhrmann, is sure to be lavish as all hell. We’ve come to expect the bright colours, the epic soundtracks, the extreme dramatic tension after classics like Moulin Rouge, Australia and The Great Gatsby. Lurhmann always puts a funky twist on things, ensuring our eyes are glued to the screen from start to finish.
The film is still in very early stages of production. Cast members have been chosen, with Austin Butler to play the infamous King of Rock N’ Roll, Australia’s Olivia Dejonge to play Priscilla Presley, and Academy Award Winner Tom Hanks to play Presley’s manager, Colonel Tom Parker. The film has yet to receive its title, though I think we can imagine it to be something sweet and classic: Elvis, perhaps? Maybe, The King. Although that was the title of Eugene Jarecki’s doco… so perhaps not. We know Luhrmann won’t go too fancy, he’ll save that kind of stuff for the film’s content.
Warner Bros told The Hollywood Reporter that the film will,
“delve into their complex dynamic spanning over 20 years, from Presley’s rise to fame to his unprecedented stardom, against the backdrop of the evolving cultural landscape and the loss of innocence in America.”
Meaning this story will follow Presley from the ripe age of 13 as he first began his music career, his journey into the film industry, his time in the war, his relationships with his manger and his wife, Priscilla, and his journey to becoming an American Rock N’ Roll hero.
When will the film begin production and be released?
The thing is, production for the Elvis biopic began early this year, with filming set to start in our very own Queensland. This was well under wraps just as the virus began to spread and infected Hanks right on the cusp of filming.
We can be sure that the diagnoses alone would’ve put a serious halt to production, not to mention all the other restrictions subsequently put into place by the government. Though filming was meant to be well underway by now, and with a release date set for October 1st 2021, I think we can safely assume everything will be pushed back for the time being.
Who knows though, Baz Luhrmann is a mastermind who works in mysterious ways. He’s a man with a big vision who knows what he wants. He might be able to get it completed just in the nick of time. For now, we’ll be dreaming of Elvis, the hunk of burnin’ love, and waiting for the extravaganza to grace our screens, so we can relish in his greatness once again.
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