Tom Hanks On Playing Elvis Presley’s Manager: ‘Both A Genius And A Scoundrel’

by Katie Maloney

Tom Hanks reveals details about Elvis Presley’s manager and his upcoming movie about the music legend.

During an interview on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, Hanks talks about his upcoming film. Directed by Baz Luhrman, the film is a biographical drama about the King of Rock n’ Roll, Elvis Presley. For the film, Hanks plays Presley’s famed manager, Colonel Tom Parker.

“He was a genius and a scoundrel, says Hanks. “He was a very disciplined man. And also a guy who you might want to check your wallet and see if you still had all your fives and tens,” he continues.

Tom Hanks talks about upcoming film about Elvis Presley.

Tom Hanks Had Dinner With Priscilla Presley

Hanks says that it is because of Parker that Elvis is still as popular as he is today. “Elvis is as big as he ever has been. And much of that credit goes to the guy I play in this movie,” says Hanks.

Parker discovered Presley during a show in Memphis. He managed Presley from 1955 to 1977 and oversaw almost every aspect of the star’s life. Although Parker can be credited for many significant moments in Presley’s career, his intentions have often been questioned in the music industry. Parker was known to take up to 50% commission from Presley’s earnings. That number was far greater than what was deemed fair in the industry.

While preparing for his role in the film, Hanks had dinner with Elvis’ wife, Priscilla. Hanks says that he expected to hear stories about Presley’s distrust for Col. Tom Parker. However, he was surprised to hear that Presley was grateful for Parker’s work with Presley. “She said ‘No, I wish he was alive today. He took good care of us…but he was a scoundrel in his way,'” says Hanks.

Actor Austin Butler is slated to perform alongside Hanks as Elvis.  Butler is best known for his roles as Tex Watson in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and Wil Ohmsford in The Shannara Chronicles. The film is scheduled to be released on November 5, 2021.