Austin Butler's Voice Coach Defends His Elvis Accent

Since the release of Baz Luhrmann's 'Elvis,' fans have called out the actor's new accent.

Austin Butler's voice is natural, despite what the critics think.  

According to Dr. Irene Bartlett, who worked with the 31-year-old on Baz Luhrmann's Elvis, Butler isn’t putting on when it comes to the similarities between his voice and the King of Rock and Roll. 

Bartlett said that after over a year of training and forming a "connection" with the character, Butler's voice is authentic and here to stay. 

"Because of COVID shutdowns, he was working on it all the time, and it's difficult to switch off something you've spent so much focus time on," Bartlett told ABC Gold Coast when asked why the actor still sounds like Elvis. "You know, when he came into his singing lessons, he was dressed in '50s-style gear." 

Bartlett added that instead of Butler doing an impersonation, director Luhrmann wanted to make sure the actor’s voice was trained to sing and speak in Elvis’ Southern drawl.  

"What they wanted was a true connection with the personality of Elvis and his story and that's what Austin worked on," she said of her training with the star. 

As a result of the formal lessons and vocal training, the actor’s voice went through a natural progression, and there is no telling when it’s going to change. 

"I feel sorry people are saying that, you know, it's still acting [but] he's actually taken [the voice] on board," Bartlett continued. "I don't know how long that will last, or if it's going to be there forever." 

After taking home the award for Best Actor at this year’s Golden Globes, Butler took the stage to give his speech and fans were quick to call out the voice. Backstage, the former Carrie Diaries star addressed the claims

"I had three years where [the role] was my only focus in life, so I'm sure there will always be pieces of my DNA that will always be linked in that way," he said in part.  

In June, Butler dished to ET about his voice transformation, and admitted that even he wasn’t so sure about it.  

"At this point, I keep asking people, 'Is this my voice?' because this feels like my real … it’s one of those things where certain things trigger it and other times as well it’s, I don’t know," Butler said. "When you live with something for two years, and you do nothing else, I think that you can't help it. It becomes a fiber of your being."



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