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Austin Butler's voice coach explains why he still sounds like Elvis

Claire Reid

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Austin Butler's voice coach explains why he still sounds like Elvis

Featured Image Credit: NBC Photo 12 / Alamy Stock Photo

Austin Butler’s voice coach has explained why the actor still seems to be talking like Elvis.

The 31-year-old star played the iconic singer in Baz Luhrmann's biopic Elvis - and while collecting his Golden Globe for best actor at the weekend, fans couldn’t help but notice that he still appeared to be using the same voice he had perfected for the movie - check it out:

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His accent attracted so much attention that even reporters covering the event mentioned it.

In response, Austin, who hails from California and used to have a very different accent, said: "I don't think about it. I don't think that I sound like him still. But I guess I must because I hear it a lot,.

"You know, I often liken it to someone who lives in another country for a long time.

"I had three years where [the role] was my only focus in life, so I'm sure there will always be pieces of my DNA that will always be linked in that way."

And now his Elvis voice coach Associate Professor Irene Bartlett, from Griffith University, has shared her views on the accent’s staying power.

Austin spent years perfecting his Elvis accent for the role. Credit: LANDMARK MEDIA / Alamy Stock Photo
Austin spent years perfecting his Elvis accent for the role. Credit: LANDMARK MEDIA / Alamy Stock Photo

The professor was first called about coaching Austin all the way back in 2019 and she went out to meet him and assess his accent.

And Dr Bartlett says it’s no mean feat replicating such a well-known voice.

Speaking to ABC Gold Coast, she said: “When you've got an iconic voice like that it's really difficult.

"It's very easy to be an impersonator because what you do is literally copy the sounds and the problem with that for someone like Austin is that it would not be sustainable."

When questioned why she thinks Austin might still be in ‘Elvis mode’, she said he had spent years working on the accent to make it just right, which was bound to end up having a lasting impression.

His voice coach says he isn’t ‘faking’ the accent. Credit: ZUMA Press, Inc. / Alamy Stock Photo
His voice coach says he isn’t ‘faking’ the accent. Credit: ZUMA Press, Inc. / Alamy Stock Photo

"Because of Covid shutdowns he was working on it all the time, and it's difficult to switch off something you've spent so much focus time on," she said.

As for how long the accent will stick with Austin, Dr Bartlett says it’s anyone’s guess - but one thing she does know is that he’s not faking it.

"What you saw in that Golden Globes speech, that's him,” she said. “It's genuine, it's not put on."

She added: "I feel sorry people are saying that, you know, it's still acting [but] he's actually taken [the voice] on board.

"I don't know how long that will last, or if it's going to be there forever."

Topics: Celebrity, TV And Film

Claire Reid
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