Timothée Chalamet Respects the Austin Butler School of Method Acting

Timothée Chalamet during CinemaCon at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace on April 25, 2023 in Las Vegas...
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Though much of the internet poked fun at Austin Butler’s incessant Elvis “accent,” even well after his breakthrough 2022 role, it appears that one of his Hollywood contemporaries was taking notes. In a new interview with GQ, Timothée Chalamet revealed that he’s been studying Butler’s method acting mannerisms as he prepares for his starring role in the upcoming Bob Dylan movie A Complete Unknown.

“I’ve basically been working with [Austin’s] entire Elvis team for my Dylan prep,” he told the outlet. “There’s a wonderful dialect coach named Tim Monich. Vocal coach named Eric Vetro. Movement coach named Polly Bennett. I just saw the way he committed to it all—and realized I needed to step it up.”

Although Chalamet’s flick will not be a true biopic like Butler’s Elvis, the latter’s performance in the Baz Luhrmann-directed blockbuster earned him hefty praise and an Oscars nomination for Best Actor—but not without some considerable preparation. Not only did Butler adopt Elvis’ signature twang, he woke up in “terror” over anticipation of the role and even went as far as covering his apartment with photos of the “Hound Dog” singer.

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Filming for A Complete Unknown was supposed to begin in August but has since been put on pause due to the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike. While it is unclear whether Chalamet is experiencing similar psychosis-inducing anxieties as Butler, the two will soon share a screen in Dune: Part Two (along with other heavyweights such as Zendaya and Florence Pugh). There, too, Chalamet seems to be taking note of Butler’s dedication to his character, Stellan Skarsgård.

“He was already talking like Stellan Skarsgård,” Chalamet said of Butler, who reportedly tapped into his new role even during the pre-filming read through. “I can’t overstate how inspiring it was to me personally. I feel like I hadn’t seen that among someone my age take the work that seriously.”

Later on in the interview, Chalamet also revealed that he gained even more insight into preparing for his film roles from Tom Cruise. The 27-year-old explained that the Top Gun actor sent him a “rolodex” of coaches for stunt training.

“After I met Tom Cruise, right after finishing the first Dune, he sent me the most wonderfully inspiring email,” Chalamet said. “He basically said, in Old Hollywood, you would be getting dance training and fight training, and nobody is going to hold you to that standard today. So it’s up to you. The email was really like a war cry.”