Riley Keough Speaks on Why She ‘Started Crying’ at the Beginning of the New ‘Elvis’ Movie

by Alex Falls

Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis is set to finally open in American theaters this weekend, but the film world is already buzzing over the glamorous depiction of Elvis Presley. Even the King’s own family members have gone on record to say the film does the legendary singer justice. Riley Keough is part of royalty as the granddaughter of the rock and roll legend.

Even though she never got to meet her famed grandfather, she said in an interview with E! News that watching Austin Butler’s performance as Presley was a very emotional experience. From early on in the film, you know you’re in for one heck of a journey with Elvis.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” Keough said. “And I think the moment I saw him, I don’t want to be a spoiler alert, but there’s a moment in the first kind of five minutes that’s very powerful with Austin, and I kind of, you know, I started crying. It was really intense.”

Keough went on to praise Butler for his transformative performance as Elvis. You might not have seen Butler perform elsewhere, but she believes his talent will be clear to anyone who sees the film.

“His dedication to the role is not something I think you see very often with young actors,” Keough said. “It’s a wonderful film. Austin is incredible. I hope everyone goes and sees Elvis.”

Keough is on Her Own Path to Fame

Keough has built her own name in the entertainment world as she’s assembled an impressive CV of acting roles in TV. In fact, she’ll soon have a chance to follow in her father’s footsteps. Keough takes on the lead role in Daisy Jones & The Six on Amazon Prime. She’ll star in the titular lead role as a fictional rock star. A role that’s in her DNA.

Before we get to see her don the rock-star life, we can first see her in the upcoming Prime show The Terminal List. Keough stars as Lauren, the wife of a Navy SEAL who discovers that a deadly mission may have been more than just a mistake.

Her preparation for the role has been a huge learning experience for her. She described the experience as “a challenge to figure out,” but one she sympathized with from her history of a family who spent a lot of time separated from each other.

“That’s a very hard way to live,” Keough said. “And they kind of tried to enjoy the moments they had with their family and I thought that was really beautiful and that when they would come home, that it was always kind of a big celebration and trying to stay in the moment knowing that they’re going to have to leave again.”

Elvis premieres in theaters June 24. The Terminal List also launches on Prime Video on July 1.