But he’s getting sympathy from fellow Oscar nominee Angela Bassett, who understands how hard it can be to say goodbye to a role.
Like Butler, Bassett received her very first Academy Award nomination for playing a singer: Tina Turner in the 1993 biopic “What’s Love Got To Do With It.”
Although Bassett is up for Best Supporting Actress for “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” this year, she told The New Yorker that playing Turner in the early 1990s stayed with her long after filming ended.
“Tina’s laugh and the way she spoke took over,” Bassett said while letting out what the article’s author described as “a high, squeaky Tina Turner laugh.” “It took over, not as long as Elvis — maybe about four months after. You so lived and breathed and began to see life through their perspective. You had to. They’re a part of you. I think that’s what’s going on with him.”
But while Bassett is understanding of what Butler might be experiencing, she also said at some point he needs to get over it.
“You have to bid it farewell, and it’s hard to let it go, because you’ve enjoyed it, you survived it, you delivered, and you’re proud of that,” she said. “You got an opportunity and you hit it out of left field. So it takes a moment to get back to regular you. But you’re different after this moment. Now you’re Austin, who did that great performance.”
Butler, whose “Elvis” performance earned him a Best Actor nomination, shocked many people by continuing to speak like the singer during his Golden Globes acceptance speech.
The actor denied purposely turning his real voice into a 24/7 Elvis impression.
“I don’t think I sound like him still, but I guess I must ’cause I hear it a lot,” he said in a video published by The Hollywood Reporter, adding, “I had three years where that was my only focus in life, so I’m sure that there’s just pieces of my DNA that will always be linked in that way.”