Vanessa Hudgens appears to be throwing shade at her ex-boyfriend Austin Butler after he got ruthlessly mocked over keeping his accent for Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis biopic.
Butler, 31, has been roasted ever since he spoke in a thick Memphis drawl just like Elvis Presley when accepting his Golden Globe award, despite the fact he is originally from Anaheim, California.
Hudgens – who was first linked to Butler back in September 2011 – commented on a post about whether his accent was ‘genuine’ that joked: ‘He went to the Lady Gaga school of Oscar campaign acting.’
Roast: Vanessa Hudgens appears to be throwing shade at her ex-boyfriend Austin Butler after he got ruthlessly mocked over keeping his accent for Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis biopic
Ex-flames: Vanessa and Austin were in a long-term relationship from 2011-2020
Fans were quick to notice that 34-year-old Hudgens replied underneath that she was ‘crying,’ perceived as crying with laughter at the jibe.
The post came from social media influencer Ryan Scott, who boats nearly 40,000 followers on Instagram.
The joke is a reference to the over-the-top lengths that Lady Gaga went when campaigning for an Oscar nomination for her role in House of Gucci, which did not fare well for the pop singer.
His caption calls back to the way the A Star is Born actress was notoriously mocked for her subpar Italian accent while portraying Patrizia Reggiani.
At the time, a dialect coach who worked on the film with her costar Salma Hayek noted that the New York-raised Gaga’s accent sounded ‘more Russian.’
And much like Butler, Gaga — real name Stefani Germanotta — insisted in a British Vogue profile that she ‘lived as [Reggiani] for a year and a half. And I spoke with an accent for nine months of that.’
Coming to Butler’s defense shortly after his Golden Globe win, his voice coach Iren Bartlett said ‘What you saw in that Golden Globes speech, that’s him. It’s genuine, it’s not put on.’
‘I feel sorry people are saying that, you know, it’s still acting [but] he’s actually taken [the voice of Presley] on board,’ she said, adding that the change might be permanent: ‘I don’t know how long that will last, or if it’s going to be there forever.’
Fans have been confused about the voice change since filming for Elvis wrapped back in March 2021, nearly two years ago.
Irene further explained why Austin still sounds like he did in the movie: ‘Because of COVID shutdowns, he was working on it all the time and it’s difficult to switch off something you’ve spent so much focus [and] time on.’
Flummoxed: Fans have been confused about the voice change since filming for Elvis wrapped back in March 2021, nearly two years ago
Vanessa’s slight follows Austin’s recent backlash from fans after he referred to his ex — who he dated for eight years — as ‘a friend’ in interviews explaining how he manifested the career-defining role while they were together.
The snub came as Austin told a story involving his former love during The Hollywood Reporter’s Actor Roundtable.
He repeatedly downplayed their relationship as he explained how his ‘friend’ encouraged him to pursue the role of Elvis in Baz Luhrmann’s biopic.
‘The month before I heard that Baz [Luhrmann] was making the movie, I was looking at Christmas lights and there was an Elvis Christmas song on the radio and I was with a friend of mine,’ he said.
‘I was singing along and my friend looked over at me and said, “You gotta play Elvis.” I said, “Oh, that’s such a long shot.”‘
‘A couple of weeks later, I was playing the piano,’ he continued.
Public shade: Fans were quick to catch this sly comment from Vanessa, which implied she was ‘crying’ laughing at the joke
‘I never really sang for any of my friends or anything. 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.”‘
While Butler didn’t specifically name Hudgens in his recollection, the actress shared the story in 2019 during an appearance on Live with Kelly and Ryan.
They were still together at the time as she recalled, ‘Last December, we were driving along and we were listening to Christmas music, and then an Elvis Presley Christmas song came on.’
His defense: Austin has said multiple times that the accent is ‘in his DNA’ after working on the lauded film for two-three years
‘He had just dyed his hair dark. He’s a natural blond, and I was looking at him and he was singing along and I was like, “Babe, you need to play Elvis.”‘
‘Then in January, he was sitting at the piano,’ she continued.
‘And he’s playing and he’s singing and I’m like, “I don’t know how, but you need to figure out how you can play Elvis. Like, I don’t know how we get rights or what we do, but you need to play him.”‘
Many took to Twitter labelling him ‘disgusting’ and ‘disrespectful’.
‘Him calling vanessa hudgens a “friend” PLEASEEEE,’ one tweeted while sharing a clip from the interview, while another wrote in the replies: ‘he’s so disgusting im sorry.’
Unhappy fans: Vanessa’s remark follows Austin’s backlash from fans after he referred to her as ‘a friend’ in interviews explaining how he manifested the career-defining role while they were together
Since their split, both Vanessa and Austin have found themselves in new long-term relationships.
Austin became involved with model and actress Kaia Gerber, 21, in late 2021 before they went red carpet official at the Met Gala in May 2022.
The twosome later jetted off to Cannes, where Gerber supported him at the premiere of Elvis.
And for her part, Vanessa is a little more than two years into her romance with MLB star Cole Tucker, 26.
Fans have since dug up an old photo of Vanessa and Kaia meeting at a High School Musical 2 premiere in 2007, demonstrating their thirteen-year age gap.
Moving on: Since their split, both Vanessa and Austin have found themselves in new long-term relationships
Striking contrast: Since Austin has been dating Kaia, Fans have dug up an old photo of Vanessa and Kaia meeting at a High School Musical 2 premiere in 2007, demonstrating their thirteen-year age gap; pictured with Gerber’s mom Cindy Crawford and brother Presley