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The Super-Long Cut Of Baz Luhrmann's Elvis You'll Probably Never See

Baz Luhrmann's "Elvis" is the biopic epic the king of rock 'n' roll so richly deserves. Telling the life story of legendary singer Elvis Presley (Austin Butler), particularly when it comes to his relationship with his manager Colonel Tom Parker (Tom Hanks), the film is a big, bombastic musical festivity that tracks the rise and decline of one of the most famous celebrities ever to live. 

There's been a ton of hype building up around the picture, especially seeing how production began before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Earlier this year, the movie was even met with an outstanding 12-minute standing ovation at the Cannes Film Festival. The movie will soon be out for all to see starting on June 24, and fans will be able to see for themselves what Luhrmann managed to accomplish for The King. 

However, this biopic could've been even bigger had the director managed to offer up his complete cut.

Baz Luhrmann once had a four-hour cut of Elvis

Is it possible for #ReleaseTheLuhrmannCut to start trending?

In an interview with RadioTimes.com, the director mentioned that at one point, the film was four hours long. He went on to explain how he had to get it down to two and a half hours, which is where its current runtime lays. So what exactly did Luhrmann have to get rid of to make the film palatable to a broader audience?

He stated, "I mean, there's lots of stuff that I shot like the relationship with the band, I had to pare [that] down — and it's so interesting how the Colonel [Tom Parker, played by Tom Hanks] gets rid of them." He also described needing to get rid of material related to Elvis' first girlfriend, Dixie, played by Natasha Bassett. But one of the most intriguing snippets that wound up on the cutting room floor is the infamous moment when Elvis met with President Richard Nixon. He went on to describe, "You know, the addiction to barbiturates and all of that, like what happens is he starts doing wackadoo things — like going down to see Nixon. I had it in there for a while but there just comes a point where you can't have everything in, so I just tried to track the spirit of the character."

That seems to be what it all comes down to. While Elvis led a rich life, there's only so much one can do within the span of a few hours. So Luhrmann simply tried to track the essence of the character, and judging from the reaction at Cannes, he accomplished that goal.