Last night, Austin Butler took home a Golden Globe for his performance as the Southern native and rock ‘n’ roll star Elvis in Baz Lurhmann’s 2022 biopic. As he took the stage to accept his award, it became painfully clear that the actor will continue to speak in the low drawl he adopted for the role.
After the awards ceremony, many were quick to ask Butler about his manner of speaking and whether or not the use of the Southern accent was intentional.
“I don’t think I sound like him still, but I guess I must because I hear it a lot,” Butler innocently tells Laverne Cox.
“I often liken it to when somebody lives in another country for a long time,” Butler continues. “I had three years where [Elvis] was my only focus in life, so I’m sure there’s just pieces of my DNA that will always be linked in that way.”
Born and raised in Anaheim, California, Butler undoubtedly did not speak with the same accent or cadence before joining Elvis. During his preparation for the role, Butler ascribed to Method acting, and seems to have lost himself a bit in the Elvis of it all.
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“During Elvis, I didn’t see my family for about three years,” Butler recalls. “I was prepping with Baz, and then I went to Australia. I had months where I wouldn’t talk to anybody. And when I did, the only thing I was ever thinking about was Elvis. I was speaking in his voice the whole time.”
This work has paid off so far, with one major award under his belt. We’ll see if changing his way of speaking permanently was worth it as award season continues.