Elvis Presley first meeting with Ann-Margret ‘captured her heart’

Viva Las Vegas: Elvis stars in 1964 teaser with Ann-Margret

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By the time 1964 rolled around Elvis Presley was becoming renowned for starring in several films a year that involved his unique and popular singing voice. To complete the films, the star was almost always paired up with an actress his character would inevitably fall in love with. But it was 1964’s Viva Las Vegas which saw the King of Rock and Roll actually falling in love with his co-star, Ann-Margret. Writing in her autobiography, My Story, the Swedish-American actress described the memorable first meeting she shared with Elvis for the movie.

Ann-Margret and Elvis first met at a soundstage before the filming began.

This meeting was to ensure there was some chemistry between the two stars – and there were heaps of it.

She wrote in her memoir: “Except for a piano, the MGM soundstage where Elvis and I met was empty. In the background, a few of his guys hung around observing their boss, a ritual I would soon come to expect.

“Under the watchful gaze of director George Sidney, a studio photographer snapped shots of what the film company executives figured would be a historic moment.”

Ann-Margret continued: “‘Elvis Presley, I’d like you to meet a wonderful young lady, Ann-Margret,’ said George Sidney. ‘Ann-Margret, this is Elvis Presley.’

“The significance was lost on Elvis and me. I reached out my hand and he shook it gently. ‘I’ve heard a lot about you,’ we said at the same time, which made us laugh and broke the ice.”

She went on to confess: “I’m not really sure why I was so calm about meeting the King. After all, this was Elvis.

“A man who had captured the heart of almost every woman in America. Little did I know he would soon capture mine.”

Elvis Presley stars in King Creole trailer in 1958

Ann-Margret and Elvis met up just a few days later to record the songs for the upcoming film.

The pair recorded three duets – The Lady Loves Me, You’re the Boss and Today, Tomorrow and Forever.

A few days after that the production moved to Las Vegas to shoot the movie – and by then the spark between the stars had transformed into a roaring flame.

After spending some time together and enjoying a few chaperoned dates, they began spending a lot of time together alone after the cameras had stopped rolling.

Ann-Margret went on to write: “I knew I’d crossed into a certain uncharted territory when Elvis asked to be alone with me, but later the frequency with which it happened made me happy. It meant Elvis truly trusted me.”

She later spoke out about what the pair discussed during their trysts, saying: “Like everyone else, Elvis had dreams and desires, hopes and hurts, wants and weaknesses.

“He didn’t reveal this vulnerable side until everyone had disappeared, until those private moments when we were alone, after darkness had blanketed the city and we’d parked somewhere up in the hills and could look down upon the sprawl of LA or up at the stars.”

Unfortunately, things couldn’t last between the two stars.

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After a year of being together, Ann-Margret and Elvis split up.

A misunderstanding in the press meant a false story circulated stating they were to be engaged.

Ann-Margret later recalled: “There were other factors in Elvis’s life that forced him apart from me, and I understood them. Elvis had always been honest with me, but still it was a confusing situation.

“We continued to see each other periodically until we had dated for almost a year. Then everything halted. We knew the relationship had to end, that Elvis had to fulfil his commitment.”


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