Colonel Tom Parker’s Biographer Says Tom Hanks’ Elvis Movie Accent Was Off

MOVIE NEWS – Tom Hanks used a particular accent in the role of Colonel Tom Parker, which, according to his biographer Alanna Nash, did not sound like this and criticized Hanks’ character in the film in other ways as well.


Although Tom Hanks was generally praised for his role as Colonel Tom Parker in Elvis, not everyone was convinced by his portrayal (we also had reservations in our review.) The film, directed by Baz Luhrmann, is not a traditional musician-biographical film as it presents the rise of Elvis Presley from the perspective of his manager. Hanks was almost unrecognizable in the role, and the actor also used a unique accent to play Colonel Parker.

According to Variety, the biographer of Colonel Alanna Nash made an exception for Hanks’ accent in the film. Nash is someone who spent a lot of time researching Parker’s life as the Colonel’s author: The Extraordinary Story of Colonel Tom Parker and Elvis Presley. Asked if Hanks had managed to catch Parker’s voice, Nash said it wasn’t and explained.

“No, he was much more American, much more rural. And he sounded like he was a little silky or speech-impaired. It turned out he had no speech defects – he was just trying to wrap Dutch around English in a southern style. It sounded like a strange (southern) regional dialect, and it was only by hearing certain consonants that it was known that he spoke Dutch. But Baz wanted it to look even “different”. Or, as Baz told me in an interview, “I thought it was imperative for Tom to be a kind of weird figure in the eyes of the audience.”

Nash said there are some things Baz Luhrmann did well in the Elvis movie. These include suggesting that Parker did everything he could to prevent Presley from fulfilling his dream and embarking on a European tour. For Presley, this was unfortunate, as the reason had nothing to do with the singer but Parker’s lack of passports.

“Parker didn’t have a passport and couldn’t leave, and he didn’t trust any other promoter who would have taken him. He cited several reasons – primarily security – and the lack of large venues and said there would not be enough money. Towards the end of his life, Parker reportedly spoke to two promoters about it, as Elvis was so deeply unhappy that he could never go on a European tour, but it never happened.”

Nash agrees that Parker has crossed some boundaries as a manager but feels he deserves more recognition for the good things he did for Presley. In that regard, Nash said Luhrmann did not give Parker enough credit for the film Elvis.

“The Colonel is a complicated figure, and although he has always taken too much of Presley’s money, he has made some very good decisions for Presley. Luhrmann was far from giving him what he deserved.”

Source:  Movieweb

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