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During Tuesday night’s Golden Globes ceremony, as viewers tuned in to hear the star of Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis accept his film honor for best actor in a drama, many noticed that his voice sounded familiar. Not because Butler has a widely recognizable voice, but because his accent sounded almost exactly like the music legend he inhabited onscreen.
After the ceremony, Butler addressed why people might be hearing the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll in his own voice, though he first acknowledged in a small moment of surprise — “Still?” he asked one reporter — that he thought he’d gotten over it.
“I don’t even think about it. I don’t think I sound like him still, but I guess I must because I hear it a lot,” he said. “I often liken it to when somebody lives in another country for a long time and I had three years where that was my only focus in life. So I’m sure that there’s just pieces of my DNA that will always be linked in that way.”
This is far from the first time people have claimed Butler sounds like he’s trying to talk like Elvis. Back in June 2022, between the movie’s Cannes Film Festival premiere and its theatrical release, the actor spoke to Elle Australia about fans who were confused about whether Butler was doing it intentionally.
“Because I’m a shy person, and when I know that there’s bits of Elvis that I’d have to click into in order to go out on stage and be in front of a ton of people, being surrounded by his name everywhere, there’s triggers,” he explained at the time. “You spend so much time obsessing about one thing, and it really is like muscular habits, your mouth can change.”
He added that after he’s got a few more years of roles under his belt, he might sound like some other people — real or fictional — too. “I know that I’m constantly changing. Check in with me in 20 years when I’ve played a lot of roles. Who knows what I’ll sound like!”
(The HFPA, which presents the Golden Globes, is owned by Eldridge Industries. The Hollywood Reporter is owned by PME Holdings, LLC, a joint venture between Penske Media Corporation and Eldridge.)
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