Viva Las Vegas: Elvis stars in 1964 teaser with Ann-Margret
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Elvis Presley did not expect to have his life changed in 1963 when he signed on to appear in Viva Las Vegas. At that time, he had starred in a massive amount of movies that showed him singing, dancing, and courting women for the delight of his millions of fans.
But then he met Ann-Margret. She herself said there were fireworks between them at their first meeting during pre-production for the movie.
Elvis and Ann-Margret spent almost every waking moment together if they could help it. Over the course of more than a year, they became infatuated with one another. Ann-Margret called Elvis her “soul mate”.
Unfortunately, when other people got involved, their relationship crumbled.
Ann-Margret was in the UK promoting Viva Las Vegas when she was asked about her relationship with the King of Rock and Roll. Somehow, she was misquoted in saying that she was secretly engaged to Elvis. This led to the star having to break one of his most important rules.
Ann-Margret’s reported comment was the match burned the relationship to the ground. Before long, Elvis had abruptly stopped contacting the singer, and they were no more. The news got out and went across the pond to the USA, and Elvis knew he had to confront his long-term girlfriend, Priscilla Presley (Beaulieu, at the time) about it.
Elvis’ close friend and member of the Memphis Mafia, Sonny West, wrote about this stressful period in his memoir.
He recalled: “The story still went out and caused a tidal wave of publicity that Elvis couldn’t fend off.”
And this news forced him to do something he didn’t want. Sonny said: “It caused him to break his own ‘golden rule.'”
Roustabout: 1964 film trailer starring Elvis Presley
Sonny said Elvis’ golden rule was: “Even if you’re caught in the act, never admit to it.”
He was, of course, referring to Elvis’ infidelities. The King famously had a number of girlfriends and flings with women throughout the years behind Priscilla’s back. And he figured that, as long as he denied it, he could claim it was pure hearsay.
Unfortunately, this time around, it wasn’t going to work. He had to come clean to Priscilla, who was utterly furious. In her own memoir, she recalled being so angry she launched something at him.
Priscilla explained that she threw a vase at a wall to enunciate how unbelievably irate she was. This wake-up call for Elvis was enough for him to get started on the next step of his life. He had previously promised Priscilla’s parents he was going to marry her. And Sonny said “Elvis Presley was a man of his word,” so that’s what he did.
Shortly thereafter, he proposed to Priscilla. And just a few short years later, the two were married.
Elvis and Priscilla got hitched on May 1, 1967, at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas. The ceremony was kept secret, and only close friends and family attended the grand affair.
Exactly one week later, on May 8, 1967 Ann-Margret married her husband, Roger Smith, who she stayed with for his entire life. He died in 2017.
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