Austin Butler Thanks Elvis and the Presley Family as He Wins His First Golden Globe: "I Love You Forever"
Austin Butler won his first Golden Globe Award for his role in "Elvis," the musical biopic about Elvis Presley, during the ceremony on Tuesday, Jan. 10. During his emotional speech, Butler honored both his own family and the Presley family, thanking them for helping him nail the role. Watch the moment below.
"All my words are leaving me," he said as he took the stage. "I just am so grateful right now. I'm in this room full of my heroes," he added, calling out Brad Pitt and Quentin Tarantino. "I want to also say to my fellow nominees, you have turned in the most beautiful, profound work, and I am so honored and proud to be listed among you."
"I owe this to a bold, visionary filmmaker who allowed me the experience to take risks and I always knew I would be supported," he continued. "Baz Luhrmann, I love you. Thank you for believing in me in those moments that I didn't even believe in myself." He also thanked his costar Tom Hanks, whom he called "the greatest dance partner," and Denzel Washington, who he said "championed" him. Luhrmann revealed in a May 2022 interview with Entertainment Weekly that Washington urged him to cast Butler.
Then, Butler turned his attention to the Presley family; Priscilla and Lisa Marie were in attendance and sitting at the "Elvis" table. "Thank you guys. Thank you for opening your hearts, your memories, your home to me. Lisa Marie, Priscilla, I love you forever," he said. As the piano began to play him off, he joked the pianist should play "Suspicious Minds."
Then Butler thanked his sister, Ashley, who was with him at the ceremony; his dad watching at home; and his mom, who died in 2014. "Mama, I love you so much, thank you for sacrificing so much for me," he said.
"And lastly," he said at the end, "Elvis Presley himself. You were an icon and a rebel, and I love you so much." He added, "You are remembered, and I will never forget."
Butler went through a five-month audition period for the lead role in Luhrmann's biopic about the king of rock and roll before he was finally announced as the lead in 2019. Butler also did all the singing in "Elvis" and worked with a vocal coach for a year before shooting began to mimic Presley's famous cadence (which, he admits, has given him a tendency to slip into the accent in real life).
"Elvis" was also nominated for best motion picture, drama, and best director at the Globes. Butler is also nominated for best actor at the Critics Choice Awards, which will be held Jan. 15, and he seems like a lock for nominations at the 2023 Screen Actors Guild Awards and Oscars.
Butler's plate of films is already looking pretty full going forward. He'll appear in "Dune: Part II" in November. He's also set to star in "The Bikeriders" with Jodie Comer, Tom Hardy, Michael Shannon, and Boyd Holbrook.