Tom Hanks Debuts New Bald Haircut For 'Elvis' Role
Feb 05, 2021 by apost team
Tom Hanks debuted his new hairdo – or lack thereof, anyway – on an appearance on the Graham Norton Show in late December. According to the actor, his new "horrible" bald look is for his role as Elvis Presley's infamous manager, Colonel Tom Parker, in an upcoming movie about Presley's life.
"Let me show you the horrible haircut I have to have in order to portray Colonel Tom Parker," Hanks joked as he lifted his cap to reveal his newly-bald head. "Check out this horrible ... Can you see that? Look at that thing!"
While it was clear the audience were not fans of the new hairdo, they couldn't help but let out a sympathetic grunt for the actor.
"I just scared the children," he continued in response to the audience's reaction. "I want to apologize for showing that."
Hanks then joked that he would let his hair grow back with a bald spot and grow a beard, too. "I think everybody would think I'm Graham Norton!" he said.
"Yes! It's uncanny," Norton replied. "You can play me in the biopic."
The new film, directed by Baz Luhrmann, is currently being filmed in Queensland, Australia, and is set to hit theatres in June 2022. While filming was supposed to start in March 2020, the production was shut down after Hanks and his wife, Rita Wilson, tested positive for COVID-19.
On March 12, Hanks took to Instagram where he announced he and his wife had tested positive for Coronavirus while in Australia. The post was accompanied by a photo of a medical glove in a biohazard trash bin.
"To play things right, as is needed in the world right now, we were tested for the Coronavirus, and were found to be positive."Tom Hanks (2020), (Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic/Getty images)
He wrote that the two went in for a test after he and Wilson came down with fever and chills.
"Well, now. What to do next? The Medical Officials have protocols that must be followed," Hanks wrote. "We Hanks’ will be tested, observed, and isolated for as long as public health and safety requires. Not much more to it than a one-day-at-a-time approach, no?"
According to USA Today, Hanks said he experienced "some body aches and was very fatigued" while he and Wilson were isolated in an air-pressurized hospital room. His wife is said to have experienced worse symptoms.Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson (2018), (Tristan Fewings/Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
The couple would continue to keep their fans updated through social media. After a couple of weeks in quarantine, a short stay in the hospital, and thousands of messages from concerned fans across the globe, Hanks and Wilson announced they were making a good recovery.
"Hello folks. @ritawilson and I want to thank everyone here Down Under who are taking such good care of us. We have Covid-19 and are in isolation so we do not spread it to anyone else," Hanks wrote in another post. "There are those for whom it could lead to a very serious illness. We are taking it one-day-at-a-time. There are things we can all do to get through this by following the advice of experts and taking care of ourselves and each other, no? Remember, despite all the current events, there is no crying in baseball. Hanx."
Then finally, after delays and hurdles galore, the Elvis biopic was able to resume production in the autumn – almost half a year later than scheduled. Rufus Sewell and Maggie Gyllenhaal, who were cast as Vernon and Gladys Presley, ended up dropping out of the film due to other commitments. Unfortuanate as that might have been for the production, director Baz Luhrmann was just happy to be back at work again.Tom Hanks (2019), (Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images)
Back in September, Luhrmann took to Instagram to post a photo of himself donning a "TCB" (Taking Care of Business) face mask as he prepared to get back to filming. "Welcome back cast and crew," he wrote in his post. “Taking care of Business” in the wonderful State of Queensland."
The director hasn't hid his excitement for the film. In another post from this January, he wrote that he had become "consumed" with it.
"Consumed with the film at the moment, thought it was the right time for a short intermission," he wrote.
The biopic boasts big names in its cast like Austin Butler, who will play Elvis Presley, and Olivia DeJonge, who will portray Priscilla Presley. Word on the street is that the film will be a huge contender for an Oscar following its release. The synopsis of the movie will aim to capture the complicated relationship between Elvis and his manager, Colonel Tom Parker.Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson (2020), (Kevin Mazur/Getty Images)
For his role, Hanks had dinner with Elvis's ex-wife, Priscilla Presley, in the hopes of getting to know more about the Colonel. In an appearance on the "Late Show with Stephan Colbert," Hanks spoke of his upcoming role and gave fans some insight into how he had prepared for it.
"Colonel Tom Parkers was kind of like a carnival operator guy, who was in the business of promoting the likes of Edward Arnold, Hank Snow, Jimmy Rodger Snow. And it took one look at this kid in Memphis, [...] he saw his effect while he was singing on the audience, mostly of women, girls and women, and realized he had perhaps [found] the greatest carnival attraction on the planet earth," Hanks said. "He had no other clients, and Elvis never had any other promoter or manager."
He then went on to describe Parker as "both a genius and a scoundrel," referring to the manager's reputation for being ruthless with Elvis throughout his career.
Hanks then revealed that he and his wife had dinner with Priscilla Presley to get to know his character more, only for him to be very surprised at what she had to say about Parker.
"I was expecting to hear stories about the distrust she had for 'Colonel Tom' Parker over these many years. And she said, 'No. He was a wonderful man, and I wish he was alive today. He took really great care of us. He was a scoundrel in his way,'" Hanks revealed.Elvis Presley (1960), (Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
According to biography.com, Colonel Tom Parker, originally from the Netherlands, began managing Elvis Presley's career in 1955 after the two shook hands in a restaurant in Memphis. The Colonel had heard about Presley through Oscar Davis, who used to work for him, and booked the young star as an opening act on a Hank Snow tour. After that, parker would try endlessly to persuade Elvis, his parents, and his previous manager, Bob Neal, to let him guide him through his career. He saw great potential in the singer, and embarked on a mission to get Presley from a hilbilly to the rock-n-roll hearthrob we would all come to love. After that fateful meeting in the restaurant, Elvis left his previous record label, Sun,f for RCA Records.
Just one year after Parker took Elvis under his wing, the singer would release some of his most iconic songs like “Heartbreak Hotel,” “Hound Dog,” “Don’t Be Cruel,” and “Blue Suede Shoes." The King was touring from coast to coast and began a career as a TV star too, having appeared on the likes of the "Stage Show" and the "Ed Sullivan Show."Elvis Presley (1968), (Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Just one year after Parker took Elvis under his wing, the singer would release some of his most iconic songs like “Heartbreak Hotel,” “Hound Dog,” “Don’t Be Cruel,” and “Blue Suede Shoes." The King was touring from coast to coast and began a career as a TV star too, having appeared on the likes of the "Stage Show" and the "Ed Sullivan Show."
Yet while Parker had been detrimental to Elvis's ultimate world-wide success, many fans thought he had been 'too controlling' of the singer. According to the Washington Post, the Dutch national would pocket half of everything Elvis earned during his career. When he was asked whether that was true in 1968, he replied, "That’s not true at all. He takes 50 percent of everything I earn."
The Colonel was so controlling of Elvis's public image that he forbade him and Priscilla to go public wih their relationship for seven whole years. In 2017, Priscilla told Closer Weekly that Parker "didn't really want Elvis [to have] a steady girlfriend," as it would supposedly lead to Elvis' fans abandoning him. For seven years, the lovebirds would use code names for one another and avoid ever being photographed together. "He knocked and gave me his code name: Fire Eyes. When he got angry his eyes would look like fire," Priscilla recalled.
According to the New York Times, Elvis's estate sued Parker in the 1980s for fraud and mismanagement. In 1983, Memphis court judge Blanchard Tual, who was investigating the case on behalf of Elvis's then 12-year-old daughter Lisa-Marie Presley, ruled that Parker had no right over the late singer's estate.
The judge decided that Parker's 50 percent cut was too high, especially when compared to the industry's usual 10-15 percent cut. Additionally, the Colonel was accused of failing to register Elvis's music for royalties, sold off 700 songs for $6.2 million – Elvis had only earned $4.6 million for them – and had defrauded between $7 and $8 million in three years. The case was settled out of court, but the high-profile nature of it only exasperated claims that the Parker had been controlling over the late King.
Now, fans will get to see that complicated relationship come to life on the big screen next year in Baz Lehrmann's biopic. We can't wait to see Tom Hanks bring the controversial figur to life next summer!
Are you excited to watch "Elvis"? Let us know in the comments, and make sure you pass this along to your friends and family!