Vanessa Hudgens thinks Austin Butler should maybe ditch the Southern accent. In Baz Luhrmann's biopic Elvis, Butler developed a distinctive accent while playing Elvis Presley that he hasn't been able to shake during his promotional tour and awards season campaign. The voice coach for Butler's film recently shared a news story on Twitter about how the accent that Butler exhibits is "genuine" and might "last forever."An Instagram user screenshotted the tweet and captioned it: "He went to Lady Gaga school of Oscar campaign acting." As a subtle nod to her ex, Hudgens wrote, "Crying."
She also liked the post — indicating she at least enjoys the conversation surrounding Butler's Elvis accent. According to some, Hudgens, who dated Butler for over eight years, inspired him to take on the prestigious role.
In August 2019, shortly after his casting in Elvis was announced, Hudgens shared the following story on Live With Kelly & Ryan: "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. 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 and Butler split sometime in January 2020. A source told E! News that the two have "no bad blood" for one another. "They're just shooting on two different continents, and it's a matter of distance," the source said. "There is no bad blood at all, and they have a lot of respect for each other." Hudgens was previously overseas filming The Princess Switch 2 for Netflix while Butler was preparing for Elvis. Another source told E! News that the exes are "split for now," but they're "going to see what happens."
"They have such a history and deep connection they could find their way back to one another," the insider added. As part of her Cosmopolitan U.K. cover interview for February 2020, Hudgens admitted that her long-distance relationship with Butler was difficult. "It's eight years this year — FaceTime, good communication, respect, and trust [are what keep us going]," she said. "The longest we've been apart was four months. It sucks! You start hating hearing yourself say, 'I miss you.' But if it's your person, you make it work."
Butler and Hudgens met on the set of High School Musical while Hudgens was dating co-star Zac Efron, who she split from in 2010 before starting a relationship with Butler in 2011. Now fast forward to 2023, and Vanessa is happily dating baseball star Cole Tucker, 26; Austin and model Kaia Gerber are also together after Gerber and Euphoria actor Jacob Elordi split in December 2021.