The director of the new Elvis biopic, Baz Luhrman, and the man who played the King of Rock and Roll, Austin Butler, surprised moviegoers at an AMC Theater in the Los Angeles suburb of Burbank.
The duo have been appearing together, and at times separately, in interviews and talk shows in the final push leading up to the release of the much-hyped and much-anticipated film.
The movie, which also stars Tom Hanks and Olivia DeJonge, chronicles the life and career of Elvis Presley from his early days as a child to becoming one of the first rock and roll stars, as well as his complex relationship with his manager, Colonel Tom Parker.
Surprise riles up moviegoers: Elvis director Baz Luhrmann and leading man Austin Butler made a surprise appearance at a special screening of the much-anticipated biopic at an AMC theater in the Los Angeles suburb of Burbank
Lurking in a hallway entrance to the theater, Luhrmann took to his camera-phone and set-up his surprise entrance.
‘I am at the AMC Theaters in Burbank with one of my first audiences for Elvis,’ the Australian director whispered into the camera.
The crowd screamed with approval when Luhrmann came from out of the darkness of the hallway to reveal himself to the audience who were eagerly awaiting a sneak peak screening of the biopic.
For an added touch of flare, a cover version of the song If I Can Dream, made famous by Elvis Presley in his ’68 Comeback Special, was added to the Instagram video.
The drama of it all: Lurking in a hallway entrance to the theater, Luhrmann took to his camera-phone and set-up his surprise entrance: ‘I am at the AMC Theaters in Burbank with one of my first audiences for Elvis,’ he whispered into the camera
Surprise! The crowd screamed with approval when Luhrmann came from out of the darkness of the theater hallway to reveal himself to the audience who were eagerly awaiting a sneak peak screening of the Elvis biopic
Rousing ovation: The audience screamed with approval when Luhrmann revealed himself
But those screams turned into a roar when the Australian director announced the arrival of the star of the biopic, Austin Butler.
As the noise of all the clapping and cheering grew louder, the two colleagues hugged it out in front of the movie screen, as fans stood in amazement shooting video of their own.
Dressed like a proper movie star in a fitted black suit and matching leather boots, Butler addressed the screaming fans by sharing how that particular theater has a special place in his heart.
‘This AMC is actually where I went on dates when I was a teenager,’ Butler, 30, confessed to the crowd, which got another rousing applause.
Set-up: The Australian director was the one to introduce Butler to the audience
Wild reaction: The actor came in from one of the entrance/exits to a roaring applause
Spreading the love: The director and his leading man hugged it out at center stage
At one point, amongst all the adoration, one young pre-teen boy, politely asked the actor if he could take a picture with him, for which he obliged without hesitation.
Luhrmann’s video was shared on the Instagram pages of the film and Warner Bros. Pictures with the caption: ‘The #ElvisTeam made another surprise visit to a screening in Los Angeles and definitely felt the love!’
‘Don’t miss @BazLuhrmann’s #ElvisMovie in theaters THIS FRIDAY — get your tickets TODAY.’
The Presley family, including ex-wife Priscilla Presley, daughter Lisa Marie Presley and granddaughter Riley Keough, have all given their seal of approval for the film and Butler’s performance as Elvis.
Promo mode: The Elvis Team is making several surprise showings at screening of the film
Feeling sentimental: ‘This AMC is actually where I went on dates when I was a teenager,’ Butler, 30, confessed to the crowd, which got another rousing applause
The King is back! Elvis, starring Austin Butler and Ton Hanks, makes its widespread release in theaters across the U.S. on Friday, June 24