Why ‘Elvis’ Director Baz Luhrmann Cast Austin Butler Over Major Pop Star

by Megan Molseed

Famed director Baz Luhrmann almost went another “direction” when looking to cast his upcoming biopic film, Elvis. At one point during the casting process, Luhrmann had his eyes on famed singer and former member of the wildly popular boy band, One Direction…Harry Styles.

Recently, the Moulin Rouge director discussed the casting decisions he made with People while developing the upcoming biopic film, Elvis. The film details the life of rock-n-roll legend Elvis Presley and premieres throughout the country on June 24. Starring in the biopic as the iconic Elvis Presley is actor Austin Butler.

But, as Baz Luhrmann discusses in a recent interview, a few other actors were considered for the leading role in the film. Among these are Top Gun: Maverick star Miles Teller and Harry Styles.

So, what was it that kept Styles from being cast in this upcoming biopic? Well, Luhrmann says, it was his already iconic status. In fact, the filmmaker points out that Styles’ acting abilities were pretty spot-on. Luhrmann even calls the award-winning rocker a “really talented actor.”

“The real issue with Harry is, he’s Harry Styles,” Luhrmann has said of the music star. “He’s already an icon.”

Harry Styles Remembers Wanting To Explore The Roll Of The Iconic Rocker In Upcoming Elvis Biopic

Recently, Harry Styles spoke of his interest in portraying the King of Rock n’ Roll in the upcoming Elvis Presley biopic. Which includes a recreation of the legend’s iconic Las Vegas performance, among other historic rock n’ roll moments.

“Elvis was probably the first person I knew outside of my family when I was a very small child,” the former One Direction singer explains in a recent interview.

“There was something incredibly sacred about it,” the Watermelon Sugar singer adds. “That felt like I should [audition].” Styles adds that he was certainly intrigued by the idea of portraying the music icon in the upcoming biopic.

“I was very intrigued by it,” the singer adds. “I feel like if a director feels like I’m not the best person for the role then it’s better for them. And it’s better for me.”

“If they think the movie’s going to be better with someone else then I don’t want to do it,” Styles continued. “Because I don’t want to be the not-as-good version.”

“I think Harry and I came to a place, genuinely I mean, he was just desperate to put the suit on and explore,” Baz Luhrmann says of Harry Styles and his desire to explore the role of Elvis.

“He’s such a great spirit,” the filmmaker adds. “And I have nothing but great things to say about Harry Styles.”