‘Elvis’ Biopic: Colonel Tom Parker’s Biographer Blasts Movie, Says It ‘Robbed Him of His Many Accomplishments’

by Emily Morgan

Alanna Nash, a biographer who wrote about Elvis Presley’s longtime manager, Colonel Tom Parker, is giving her thoughts on the new flick that follows The King’s rise to fame. 

The new biopic, currently in theaters, was directed by Baz Luhrmann and starred Austin Butler as Elvis and Tom Hanks as Parker. Since its release on June 24, it’s received positive reviews from critics, with Butler’s performance receiving glowing praise. 

The film also marks Luhrmann’s return to the big screen for the first time in nearly ten years, with his last movie being 2013’s The Great Gatsby. The new biopic follows the life and career of The King-of-Rock-n-Roll as he rises to global stardom. It also takes a look at his tumultuous relationship with his manager. 

In 2003, Nash published her biography of Parker, The Colonel. The book was six years in the making, with Nash spending countless hours researching Parker’s life. 

While Elvis has received high praise from some of Presley’s inner circle, such as Priscilla and Lisa Marie Presley, Nash has a different opinion. During an interview, Nash discussed her problems with the film, saying it relies too much on style and has an odd timeline. 

According to Nash, the film’s timeline of the film is nonexistent. Instead, per her account, Luhrmann presents the facts in a compressed and loose way, even going so far as to call it a “fever dream.” She also criticizes how the movie portrayed the Colonel as the film’s villain, saying it didn’t correctly display his many accomplishments while managing Elvis. 

“The timeline… well, what timeline? It’s all a Baz Luhrmann fever dream,” she lambasted. “The past, present and future are all shook up like a ’50s milkshake and served with a thousand straws!

Elvis beats out Top Gun: Maverick at the box office

“Other than the tremendous pains Baz has taken to make this story seem “woke,” the liberties are essentially fair — except to Parker. In making him such an antagonist, they have robbed him of his many accomplishments with his client.”

Despite Nash’s criticism, it hasn’t kept people from heading to the theaters to see the new flick. On Monday, Elvis had officially ousted top contender, Top Gun: Maverick to claim the No. 1 spot at the box office. 

Over the weekend, both films battled it out at the box office, with the biopic claiming the top spot on Friday, then dropping to second place on Saturday. On Sunday, the films were neck and neck for first place in North America, with each reportedly earning an estimated $30.5 million over the weekend. 

As of Monday, Elvis generated $31.1 million from 3,906 theaters in its box office premiere, while Tom Cruise’s Top Gun: Maverick brought in $29.6 million from 3,948 venues.