What connects Elvis to LA Galaxy, via Mr Oizo? | Baz Luhrmann

From Memphis to Hollywood

Elvis was directed by Baz Luhrmann… Photography: Bettmann Archive

Baz Luhrmann’s point of view Elvis was never going to be underestimated: “It’s not so much a movie as a 159-minute trailer for a movie called Elvis,” concluded Peter Bradshaw. Fast-rising Austin Butler plays Presley, with Tom Hanks as dastardly Colonel Tom Parker. It’s been two decades since Luhrmann made a decent film: the new one hits UK cinemas on June 24.

Solar sessions

Eric flat puppet
…who had a No. 1 single in 1999, just like Mr Oizo… Photography: Aliyah

Elvis had 21 No. 1 singles in the UK. Baz Luhrmann also achieved the feat with his Everyone is free (to wear sunscreen), an unexpected No. 1 in 1999. It was the era’s equivalent of a Live, Laugh, Love poster. It was a good year for one-shot wonderswith Mambo No 5, Blue (Da Ba De) and Mr Oizoit is flat beatwhich rebounded from Levi’s announcement to top the charts.

A French touch

Julie Depy
… alter ego of Quentin Dupieux, who directed Deerskin, with Albert Delpy, who appeared with his daughter Julie in Au bord du gouffre… Photograph: Getty Images

Quentin Dupieux, the Frenchman behind Mr Oizo, also makes surrealist films. 2019’s Deerskin, a dark comedy about a vintage jacket, was the first to hit theaters in the UK. Among its cast is Albert Delpy, a prolific stage and film actor, as well as the father of Julie Depy – he played his on-screen father in two of his films and in his 2021 Netflix/Canal+ series On the Verge.

If the Shue fits

Andrew Shue
…also featuring Elisabeth Shue, whose brother Andrew was at Melrose Place… Photograph: Getty Images

The show followed the Los Angeles lives of four friends in their late 40s, played by Delpy, Sarah Jones, Alexia Landeau and Elisabeth Shue. For a brief period in the 1990s, his brother Andrew Shue almost became the most recognizable Shue, with his role as Billy in Melrose Place. He also had a small football career, even occasionally playing for The Galaxy while on TV.

The wedding plot

Priscilla Presley
…just like Priscilla Presley, who married Elvis in 1967. Photograph: Getty Images

Joining a character arc as Nurse Benson mid-Melrose Place was Priscilla Presley. Long before turning to Dallas and the Naked Guns, she married Elvis in 1967. She is played in Luhrmann’s film by Australian actress Olivia DeJonge, previously seen in Netflix’s ‘sci-fi Dawson’s Creek’ The Society. And with that, this mysterious train comes to the end of the line.

Pairing notes

Lily Greil Marcus’ revered 1975 book Mystery Train examines American culture through rock ‘n’ roll – in 1991 he followed up with Dead Elvis: A Chronicle of a Cultural Obsession.

Beverage In 2015, Luhrmann and costume designer wife Catherine Martin collaborated inside the Faena Hotel Miami Beach. Their signature cocktail includes vodka, champagne, aperol, rose and hibiscus.