Why Priscilla Presley From The Elvis Movie Looks So Familiar

Olivia DeJonge made her official acting debut in 2011's short film "Good Pretender." Eleven years later, the actress starred in Baz Luhrmann's "Elvis." DeJonge was born in Melbourne, Australia, and has worked on numerous projects in the years that have transpired between 2011 and 2022. 


DeJonge told The AU Review that the process of landing the role of Priscilla Presley in "Elvis" took time, but it all began with an audition tape. She said, "I set up a self-tape and a couple months later I was sitting at dinner with my agents, and I asked them about the role." She found out later in the evening that the role was hers. DeJonge and the real Priscilla Presley didn't connect with one another until after the movie was made, but Presley admitted that she's been surprised by how well DeJonge played the role. As she told Good Morning America, "I'm so happy that she was sensitive and that she was caring and that she was a little strong with [Elvis] as well."

If DeJonge looked familiar to you while you were watching "Elvis," chances are you know her from some of her earlier projects. Here's a look at her fast-growing career.


Olivia DeJonge was terrorized by her grandparents in The Visit

It's fair to say that Olivia DeJonge has more than dabbled in psychological thrillers and straight-up horror movies throughout her career. In 2015, she played the character Becca in "The Visit," a film about two siblings who are sent to stay with their grandparents and who end up terrorized by the odd behavior the two elders are displaying. The movie was directed by M. Night Shyamalan, who is known for coming up with truly disturbing tales.


DeJonge spoke to DuJour about "The Visit," revealing that she wasn't really sure what the movie was about when she auditioned. "What I first read was just a really straightforward, normal scene," she explained. "I had no idea what [Shyamalan] had concocted." But despite the scary nature of the story, the actress said that she ended up having a great time on set. As she put it, "Night's really great and so are the other actors. They're really good fun, but at the same time there were certain elements that were quite dark and serious."

She was a babysitter tasked with a lot more than child care in Better Watch Out

Olivia DeJonge starred in the Christmas cult classic thrilled "Better Watch Out" in 2016. The film wasn't exactly a blockbuster hit, but as DeJonge discussed with The AU Review, the movie definitely has a loyal fan base that even reaches out to DeJonge each holiday season. While speaking to the publication, DeJonge shared, "That was such a quiet hit that film. We weren't even sure what it was going to be. And it's still going. Every Christmas I get DM's about (the film)."


DeJonge stars as a babysitter who ends up facing a lot more than she bargained for when it becomes clear someone, or even a group of someones, have broken into the house and are intent on terrorizing everyone inside it. And while the movie might have a core audience of fans who love it no matter what, RogerEbert.com film critic Simon Abrams seemed frustrated with the film. In his review, he wrote, "It's the kind of movie that pushes your buttons at every turn, and casts actors based solely on their ability to play to your snap judgments of what they're 'really' like off-screen."

Olivia DeJonge was a fan favorite on Will

Olivia DeJonge joined the cast of TV show "Will" in 2017, starring as a character named Alice Burbage. Her character was a bit of a fan favorite on the show, with TNT describing Alice Burbage as "a strong-willed rebel who tests the limits of her male-dominated world with a witty charm that masks an underlying frustration" (via Fangirlish).


DeJonge's character is up against a lot. As the daughter of the powerful James Burbage, she attempts to carve her own path despite the clear wishes of those around her that she do anything but. She also begins a relationship with the show's title character, which threatens to upend the entire world around her. 

The show is meant to be a modern portrayal of the early years in the life of William Shakespeare. In an interview with Nylon, DeJonge admitted that she didn't like the poet's work before working on the show, primarily because she found his language difficult to understand. As she put it, "It's not until you strip back the fear of not understanding, and genuinely give it a try, that you can appreciate its beauty."


She starred as a social outcast in The Society

Olivia DeJonge joined the cast of the television series "The Society" in 2019, playing Elle Tomkins for 10 episodes during the show's short-lived run. The Netflix original series saw a group of teens transported to a place that seemed a lot like their home city but with a few notable differences. For starters, there were no adults at all — not even their parents. As Collider noted, the series follows a bit of a "Lord of the Flies"-esque plot, as the teens are eventually tasked with facing the breakdown of their society and the inevitable conflict that follows. 


DeJonge's character, Elle Tomkins, was celebrated by Our Culture Magazine as one of the most interesting characters from the show. The publication noted that Elle begins the show as a hard-to-like character — she's not friendly and is even described as mean. However, she begins to soften as the series progressed.

She starred in the psychological thriller Josie & Jack

In 2019, Olivia DeJonge starred in the movie version of the book "Josie & Jack." Once again, DeJonge found herself at the helm of a psychological thriller — one that certainly stuck with viewers long after they watched it. DeJonge played Josie Raeburn, one half of a brother-and-sister duo who, upon the death of their mother, find themselves suddenly imprisoned in their own home at the hands of their own father.


The Upcoming praised DeJonge's work in the movie, noting that she "conveys her character's complexity in her multi-layered portrayal of Josie and establishes a believable rapport with her on screen brother." However, the review site didn't find the film as a whole exactly compelling, giving it two stars out of five and noting that the off-putting lack of pace in the movie makes it difficult to fully engage with what's happening on screen.

Olivia DeJonge played a Southern runaway in Stray Dolls

Olivia DeJonge was also seen in "Stray Dolls" in 2019, co-starring alongside "Sex and the City" star Cynthia Nixon. The movie, which was directed by Sonejuhi Sinha, gained praise from Cinema Femme for its portrayal of women who stray outside the lines of convention. 


Sinha told Cinema Femme that DeJonge's character, Dallas, was thoughtfully put together. As she explained, "We subscribe to making Dallas really well-rounded. She is explosive and unpredictable, but she's also a child, extremely vulnerable."

Much of the movie is about the stories of outsiders; one character, Riz, is seen as an outsider because she is a recent immigrant to the United States, while DeJonge's character Dallas is an outsider because she's a runaway from the southern United States. Sinha told Cinema Femme, "Dallas and Riz find themselves on the seesaw, because they are equal–they are equal outsiders together."

She is getting a lot of attention for her role in 2022's Elvis

Olivia DeJonge's mainstream breakthrough role just might be as Priscilla Presley in 2022's "Elvis." As she recounted to British Vogue, the actor found out she got the role four months after auditioning; her agent simply received a text message from director Baz Luhrmann's team that read, "Olivia's the choice for Elvis."


DeJonge's took her casting as Elvis Presley's wife Priscilla Presley seriously, and explained to the publication that she wanted to make sure she got to the heart of what she felt the story was really about. She also wanted to portray Priscilla as someone who experienced a full range of human emotion, just like the rest of us. As she put it, "I think oftentimes women are depicted as two-dimensional in cinema. I think it would have been easy to sit around and [flowery voice] talk like this. But that's not what it was like."