As the star of Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis, Austin Butler joins a long list of Hollywood luminaries who have taken on the challenge of portraying the legendary Elvis Presley. Known as the King of Rock 'n' Roll, the American singer, actor, and all-around star was one of the most groundbreaking acts of the 20th century. He was at the center of pop culture from the release of his first hit single, “Heartbreak Hotel” in 1956, until his untimely death in 1977.
But even today, the King lives on! From documentaries and biopics to characters inspired by star, there is no shortage of movies about this cultural icon. So, if you need more Elvis content after watching the latest film about the “Jailhouse Rock” singer, here’s a chronological list of some of the best movies about Elvis.
'Heartbreak Hotel' (1972)
When single mom and Elvis superfan Marie Wolfe gets hurt in a car accident, her 17-year-old son Johnny and his bandmates drive a pink Cadillac to kidnap Elvis as a present to cheer her up. Elvis, played by David Keith, is understandably upset about being kidnapped and doesn’t take to Johnny at first, but by the end of this screwball comedy, the two form a touching friendship.
Starring Kurt Russell as the singing sensation and directed by John Carpenter, 1979’s Elvis was originally released as a TV movie on ABC. Elvis follows the life and career of Elvis up until 1970, but avoids depicting the last years of his life leading up to his death. The movie was a huge success and earned critical acclaim, going so far as to win a Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture Made for Television, as well as an Emmy for Kurt’s acting.
'Elvis and the Beauty Queen' (1981)
Elvis and the Beauty Queen, another made-for-TV movie, stars '80s heartthrob Don Johnson as the King of Rock 'n' Roll and focuses on Elvis’s relationship with Linda Thompson, who he dated from 1972 until a few months before he died in 1977.
'Finding Graceland' (1998)
In this offbeat indie film, a young widower named Byron is on a solo road trip to Memphis, Tenn. when he picks up a disarmingly charming hitchhiker who claims to be the late Elvis Presley. Over the course of their road trip, Byron opens up about losing his wife in a tragic car accident and finds Elvis to be a source of comfort and wisdom. The quirky drama also features a Marilyn Monroe impersonator played by Bridget Fonda.
'Elvis & Nixon' (2016)
A more recent portrayal of the King can be found in the comedy-drama Elvis & Nixon, which tells the little-known true story of the time Elvis met the President. Starring Michael Shannon as Elvis and Kevin Spacey as Nixon, the film centers around the meeting of these two men, which resulted in the most requested photograph in the United States National Archives.