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 Post subject: TCM Host Comments
PostPosted: Sun Jul 15, 2007 11:06 pm 
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I can't think of the name of the guy who hosts some of the TCM showings (not Robert Osborne, I think it's Jeff something), but anyway, I watched Clambake this evening, and I always enjoy the comments and trivia from the hosts. This guy, being a critic, I thought might not be too flattering of this movie, and he did say that it was formulaic in that it seemed very similar to the 2 that preceded it and the 2 that followed it, but no one wanted to tamper with the formula as it tended to make money. But as he said, why did people go see it if it was so routine? Because "Elvis Presley was the definition of charisma. He sang 7 songs and that was enough reason for people to put their money out and watch it, and it's still reason enough to spend 2 hours on a Sunday afternoon watching it." (That's paraphrased somewhat, except for "the definition of charisma." That's a quote! :wink: )

Again, not the best of Elvis's movies and a couple of silly songs (SOME were good!), and I've read that Elvis had some kind of accident (tripping on a hair-dryer cord and hitting his head) delaying the start of filming, but still with Elvis in it, it's worth a couple of hours of my time, no matter how many times I've seen it. :D


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 17, 2007 12:32 am 
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That tripping story was about then right-but Elvis thought he had been hit from behind! He said he wasn't using a hair dryer! Anyway, that is when the Col. had him at his mercy, Elvis had a concussion and wasn't up to much for several days, splitting head and all and the Col. used the time to brain wash him good. They all did, that's when Pris got him to burn his books for her, to put all that gibberish away and his dad was in on it too.
Anyway, Elvis had the presence of mind to hide his favorites and not burn them! He just gave in to quiet them down and to make them leave him alone he said, they were driving him nuts, his head was killing him he had double vision, couldn't do much without getting dizzy and they were like broken records-so he gave in to keep the peace and "gave up" his religious and spiritual interests in their presence. Even the Self Realization organization was attacked by them and he quit going there-except on the sly just as he did his book interests. Pris thought he cared more about them than he did her because he prefered to read instead of playing games with her. He said he was "livin' a lie all that time" meaning hiding his true feelings, trying to be what they thought a real man was etc: and he just felt empty and lost, hated the films and just wanted to get away from everything. But he had to keep making those dumb movies-over and over and over...same plot, same dialog, just different people here and there and scenery even looked the same sometimes. He just hated it all.
I don't blame him. All he wanted was to be a good actor-and he ended up being a "baby sitter" he said. I told him his movies were fun, he was in them and that was why we all kept going to see them, to see him. He got very quiet a few moments, then said very quietly and in a kind of strange way, "I'll try to remember that." I still recall feeling very badly for saying that, it was like I put more pressure on him or something. It was just a weird feeling-maybe it was coming from him, I don't know. I felt guilty for a while though. wjh



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Wanda June Hill
author of "We Remember, Elvis" & "Elvis - Face to Face"
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 Post subject: Tripping Incident
PostPosted: Tue Jul 17, 2007 12:43 am 
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I think the official story was he'd tripped on the cord in the dark or something like that (I would guess it might be Priscilla's dryer), but I believe it was Larry Geller's book where I read that Elvis had a bump on the back of his head, not the front, the implication being that someone had hit him from behind. I don't recall what reason Larry gave (if any) for why it might have been done or by whom, but I do remember him saying that the Colonel kind of took over and basically told everyone Elvis was not to discuss religion with any of them (translation -- with Larry) and ran Larry off.

I know Elvis wanted to do other films, and I hate it for him that he had little opportunity. And the few times he tried, the box office receipts were down and they went back to the formula. He really did show a lot of promise as an actor. I just wonder if he was just so "Elvis," his presence so strong, that people had trouble accepting him as the character and just saw HIM. But you're right, we all watch the movies to see him. I'm sorry that seemed to make him feel bad because I know you meant it as a compliment of how much people loved him. I wish he had taken it that way. :(


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 Post subject: What's the Colonel's Problem?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 17, 2007 6:46 pm 
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How can Elvis being mentally, spiritually, and emotionally strong be a problem for Col.? Other than maybe being able to control him, make him feel dependent rather than empowered, able to withstand the brainwashing/hypnosis/whatever he was doing? Or maybe he was afraid Elvis would choose another path and leave show business altogether. I don't think he would've because he seemed to enjoy it too much. Parker may have been a master with the business end, but seems to me Elvis's career went better when it was ELVIS making the career decisions, not the Colonel! I refer to the choice of movies causing his movie career to fall apart, the choice of format for the '68 Special, the return to live concerts, etc. Hey, more money for everyone! Hello! Maybe the Colonel should've listened to Elvis more. After all, he'll do better all-around when his heart is in what he's doing. Elvis did stand up to him once or twice and it worked. I just wish he'd done it more often. I've heard several rumors of why he didn't (beholden to him, shook hands on it, hypnosis, threats to force Elvis to pay his "back fees" Colonel had never collected, Elvis believing the Colonel when he told him he'd be nothing without him, etc.). Who knows the real reason? But some say Elvis was very close to dumping him (perhaps after the fall '77 tour) and having Tom Hulett handle that for him. I wish he'd had the time.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2007 1:01 am 
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Great comments made by the TCM host! :D Thanks for sharing this with us Wanda Mc and like you, I feel that with Elvis in a movie it's DEFINITELY worth a couple of hours of my time no matter how many times I've seen it either. :wink: :D I have no trouble whatsoever believing what Larry said about there being a bump on the BACK of poor Elvis's head as opposed to the whole hair dryer concoction. :cry: It would sadly make sense what he was stating in a roundabout way IS what actually occured since as Wanda said, he had a concussion fron his injury which would then make him MUCH more susceptible to the effects of brainwashing, hypnosis, etc......... then all of a sudden no more "religious kick" for Elvis to be on and no more Larry anywhere around. :cry: :evil: The whole chain of events that occured at this time both saddens and angers me because there was just NO NEED for ANY OF IT to happen!!! Why couldn't Parker realize that a happier and more professionally and personally satisfied Elvis would've meant MORE MONEY that Elvis could have made in the long run???? :roll: Lord knows Parker MORE than understood about our poor guy making MORE money to go into his(Parker's) pockets :roll: :evil: :cry: Unless, like it's already been stated Parker thought that if Elvis would have done the type of movies that he WANTED to do then maybe Elvis would have realized he DIDN'T need Parker after all???? :? No matter what the reason, my mind still baffles and my heart still breaks over it. :cry: I too wish that Elvis would have had the time to effect the changes that I've also heard he was getting ready to make in '77 Wanda Mc ,as dumping Parker for Tom Hulett was INDEED supposed to be one of those changes. I believe I read somewhere that Elvis even wanted Tom Hulett to take over for Parker starting back in '73. I so wish he just would have done it then. :cry:


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 Post subject: Tom Hulett as Tour Manager
PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2007 1:39 am 
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Mari wrote:

Quote:
I too wish that Elvis would have had the time to effect the changes that I've also heard he was getting ready to make in '77 Wanda Mc ,as dumping Parker for Tom Hulett was INDEED supposed to be one of those changes. I believe I read somewhere that Elvis even wanted Tom Hulett to take over for Parker starting back in '73. I so wish he just would have done it then.


Jerry Schilling tells a story in his book of an all-night conversation with Elvis (1972 or so) about wanting to tour overseas and he was "passionate" about it and angry that it hadn't happened already. So Jerry took advantage of a lunch meeting with Parker to bring it up. Parker barked that he should ask Tom Hulett, "He knows the situation over there." So he brought it up that night to Hulett.

Quote:
The Colonel had always made it sound like it was just too complicated to ever be resolved -- too difficult to work out the travel and promotion and security and guarantees. But...other acts Tom had worked with hadn't seemed to have had any trouble touring all over the globe. I asked if, theoretically, we could work out all the arrangements -- and especially the security -- for Elvis to perform an engagement in London that could be promoted in other European cities. Tom thought a monent, then said, "Yeah, I think so." We talked awhile about how some of the scheduling would work, and it seemed that, by the end of the night, some forward progress toward Europe had been made.

The next day, the Colonel and I were walking together down a hallway in the Hilton Hotel in San Antonio when I told him about my conversation with Tom.

"Colonel, Tom said we can do it. He thinks we can work it out if Elvis wants to tour overseas."

The Colonel stopped in his tracks, hurled his cane down the hall, turned on me, and hollered, "G-damn it, then -- you handle him."

There were two messages that became very clear to me in that hallway. I was not actually being requested to "handle" Elvis in any way. And we wouldn't be going to London anytime soon.


According to Jerry, Elvis had planned a 2-week vacation in Europe around 1969 or 1970. The Colonel even cancelled that, hence the trip to the Bahamas instead. Colonel told him the European fans would be insulted if he vacationed there before he'd performed there, and Jerry felt that Elvis avoided the conflict by changing his plans.

Can't help but wonder how things would've been different had Elvis fired him then and there and hired Tom Hulett. I don't know what else might have been different, but I 'd bet money that Elvis would've toured in Europe.


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