"My mom is no longer with us, but I've been thinking about her a lot this week, just imagining how proud she'd be of her son", the actor said.
Austin Butler received his first-ever Oscar nomination on January 24, but he did not forget his roots. According to PEOPLE, the Elvis actor's IMDb biography was written by his "proud parents," David Butler and his late mom Lori Butler, in 2007 and has been kept the same.
In the biography, his parents sweetly gushed about their son's early acting career that began after he landed "a rather permanent background-acting gig" on the Nickelodeon series, Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide in 2004, and "from that point on, he considered himself to be a serious actor."
According to his parents, Butler's "first named (albeit uncredited) character was 'Toby' in the Hannah Montana episode Oops, I Meddled Again in 2006 (girl broke up with him)." Then his "first speaking role was in Zoey 101 (2005), as 'Dannifer' or 'Wrong Danny' (a few lines and a girl poured soda down his shirt)."
They joked that while he got a "meatier role on Hannah Montana in 2007" it was "still a small part, but very fun." They added: "a few more lines, and he got to fling popcorn on Miley Cyrus." Butler explained during an interview with Vogue in April 2022, that his parents "divorced amicably" when he was seven. After that, he and his older sister, Ashley, "moved fluidly" between their respective houses throughout their childhood.
The actor spoke fondly of his childhood and remembered his mother, who died in 2014 from cancer while hosting Saturday Night Live in December 2022. He said, "Some of my favorite memories from growing up are watching SNL with her, and we'd watch every week," Butler shared during the show's opening monologue. "And even though I had this crippling shyness, when I was with her, I'd just do anything to make my mom laugh."
"I do ridiculous faces and voices, I did this ridiculous Gollum impression. Being silly with her is what broke me out of my shell and the core of what started me in acting," he continued. "My mom is no longer with us, but I've been thinking about her a lot this week, just imagining how proud she'd be of her son, who used to not be able to order food for myself at a restaurant, is now standing on this stage."
Butler also honored Lisa Marie Presley by dedicating his nomination to her, he told TODAY, "It's the same thing I feel with Elvis; I wish that they could see these moments, you know? It's just sort of strange to celebrate at a time of such deep grief. But I sort of think of it as a way to honor her. This is for her."
The actor is making all his loved ones proud. Elvis has received eight Oscar nods, including Best Picture and Best Actor.
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Jon Kopaloff