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Colin Farrell Unknowingly Asked Austin Butler For Vanessa Hudgens' Number After 'Elvis' Star Recalled Getting Cast

Photo: Fred Duval | lev radin | Shutterstock
Colin Farrell, Vanessa Hudgens, Austin Butler

Colin Farrell unknowingly tried to shoot his shot with Austin Butler's ex-girlfriend.

During an "Actors Roundtable" with The Hollywood Reporter, Butler relayed the story of how he landed the coveted role of Elvis Presley in Baz Luhrmann's "Elvis," which recently earned Butler a 2023 Golden Globe for best actor in a motion picture (drama).

While recounting the story, Butler mentioned a friend that immediately piqued Farrell's attention.

Colin Farrell unknowingly asked Austin Butler for Vanessa Hudgens' number while the 'Elvis' actor recalled how he was cast.

During the retelling of how he was cast in "Elvis" to the other actors sitting beside him, which included Brendan Fraser, Adam Sandler, Jeremy Pope, Ke Huy Quan, and Farrell, Butler mentioned a specific friend.

"So I was looking at Christmas lights, there was an Elvis Christmas song on the radio, and I was with a friend of mine, and I was singing along, and my friend kind of looked over at me and goes, 'You've got to play Elvis,'" Butler said.

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"I said, 'oh, that's such a longshot.'"

He continued, explaining that his friend then brought up him playing Elvis Presley once more.

"Then a couple of weeks later, I was playing the piano. I never really sang for any of my friends or anything. That same friend was there, and I was playing the piano. She said, 'I'm serious. You've got to figure out how you can get the rights to a script.'"

Farrell, who looked intrigued, then interjected during Butler's story.

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"Who is this friend? I need their…" Farrell asked, making a phone gesture with his hand.

Butler played along, laughing as he responded, "Yeah, I'll give you the number."

While Butler referred to his person as his "friend," it was actually his ex-girlfriend, Vanessa Hudgens, whom the actor dated for nine years before calling it quits in 2020.

Vanessa Hudgens previously spoke about helping Butler get the part of Elvis.

It didn't take long for fans to connect the dots on the "friend" Butler had been referring to in his story.

In 2019, during an appearance on "Live with Kelly and Ryan," Hudgens told the exact same story of how she encouraged then-boyfriend Butler to seek out playing Elvis in a movie.

At the time of the interview, it had been a month since Butler was officially announced as the leading role in "Elvis."

"It's so crazy because last December, we were driving along, and we were listening to Christmas music, and then an Elvis Presley Christmas song came on," she said.

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"He had just dyed his hair dark — he's a natural blonde — and I was looking at him and he was singing along and I was like, babe, you need to play Elvis. I don't know how, but I'm serious. You need to play him."

Hudgens continued, adding that she brought it up once again after seeing him playing the piano and singing.

"Then in January, he was sitting at the piano — he's a musician — and he's playing, and he's singing, and I'm like, 'I don't know how, but you need to figure out how you can play Elvis. Like, I don't know how we get rights or what we do, but you need to play him.'"

It's safe to say that Hudgens' manifestation worked, and soon afterward, Butler's agent alerted him about Lurhmann developing a film about Elvis Presley.

Butler spent five grueling months auditioning for the lead role before eventually landing the part, beating out the likes of Harry Styles, Miles Teller, and Ansel Elgort.

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Nia Tipton is a writer living in Brooklyn. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics. Keep up with her on Instagram and Twitter.