Baz Luhrmann’s “Elvis” brought hip-shaking swagger to the Cannes Film Festival on Wednesday, debuting a grand and glitzy portrait of the Memphis rock ‘n’ roll legend on the French Riviera.
Luhrmann’s film, the largest and flashiest Hollywood film making its world premiere in Cannes, brought Tom Hanks and Austin Butler, who plays Presley, to Cannes’ famed red carpet. Joining them, too, was Priscilla Presley, Presley’s ex-wife, who has enthusiastically endorsed Luhrmann’s movie.
At a festival seeking to shrug off two years of pandemic, expectations were high that Luhrmann, who also premiered “The Great Gatsby” in Cannes, would bring Cannes’ biggest and most extravagant party.
“Elvis,” though, isn’t just a big-screen tribute to Presley. It centers on the singer’s long and tortured relationship with manager Tom Parker (played by Hanks), a former carnival worker whose control over Presley was widely criticized as unethical and harmful to Presley.