Austin Butler has recently addressed social media backlash he received on calling his former girlfriend Vanessa Hudgens “a friend”.
In a new Esquire interview, the Dune: Part Two star clarified his stance on why he didn’t name Vanessa, rather called her a friend in his earlier media interaction.
“Oh, yeah, I learned a lesson with that one,” said the 32-year-old.
Austin stated, “I felt that I was respecting her privacy in a way and not wanting to bring up a ton of things that would cause her to have to talk.”
“I have so much love and care for her. It was in no way trying to erase anything,” added the Elvis actor.
Austin, who dated Vanessa from 2011 to 2020 pointed out that he “valued” his “own privacy so much,” therefore, he didn’t want to give up “anybody else’s privacy”.
Last month, the actor opened up that his ex-girlfriend inspired him to do Oscar-nominated Elvis role during a 2023 Hollywood Reporter Actors Roundtable conversation.
"The month before I heard that Baz [Luhrmann] was making the movie, I was going to look at Christmas lights with a friend, and there was an Elvis Christmas song on the radio and I was singing along, and my friend (referring to Vanessa) looked over at me and goes, ‘You've got to play Elvis.' I said, 'Oh, that's such a long shot,’” recalled Austin.
The actor further said, A couple of weeks later, I was playing the piano and that same friend was there and I was playing the piano. She said, I'm serious. You gotta figure out how you can get the rights to a script.' Then my agent called and said, 'So Baz Luhrmann is making an Elvis film.’”
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