Synopsis Of The CBS TV Movie ELVIS

This is the synopsis of the CBS television special "ELVIS". ELVIS, a new four-hour movie event, will be broadcast as the "CBS Sunday Movie" Sunday, May 8 (9:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) and Wednesday, May 11 (8:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. The fact-based drama is about the life of Elvis Presley, one of the greatest entertainers who ever lived. With the full cooperation and participation of the Elvis Presley Estate, his electrifying yet tumultuous story -- from his humble beginnings to his meteoric rise to fame -- will be told. Presley's master recordings will be heard in a biographical film for the first time. Jonathan Rhys Meyers ("Bend It Like Beckham") stars as Elvis Presley, Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winner Camryn Manheim ("The Practice") stars as Gladys Presley, Golden Globe Award-winner Randy Quaid ("LBJ: The Early Years") stars as "Colonel" Tom Parker, Rose McGowan ("Charmed") stars as Ann-Margret, Robert Patrick ("Terminator 2: Judgment Day") stars as Vernon Presley and Antonia Bernath ("Living Neon Dreams") stars as Priscilla Beaulieu Presley. ELVIS was executive produced by Robert Greenblatt and David Janollari ("Six Feet Under") for The Greenblatt Janollari Studio. Howard Braunstein and Michael Jaffe ("It Must Be Love") are the executive producers for Jaffe/Braunstein Films, LTD. Ilene Kahn Power ("Gia") is the co-executive producer and Judy Cairo ("Gleason") is the producer. James Sadwith ("Sinatra") directed from a script by Patrick Sheane Duncan ("Mr. Holland's Opus"). Night One Dressed in a black leather suit, a nervous 33-year-old Elvis Presley (Rhys Meyers) is backstage preparing to sing in front of a live audience for the taping of the "The '68 Comeback" television special. Flashback – 18-year-old Presley lives in a small apartment in Memphis, Tenn., with his mother Gladys (Manheim), and his father, Vernon (Patrick). Although he is currently working as a truck driver, Presley promises that someday, when he makes it big in the music business, he will buy his parents a Cadillac and a house. As a teenager, Presley spends a great deal of time hanging out on Beale Street in Memphis, listening to R&B music. He shares his dreams of becoming a famous recording artist with his girlfriend, Dixie Locke (Jennifer Rae Westley). He confides to her that he wants to record a song for his mother on Sun Records in the hopes that someone will hear his singing and sign him to a recording contract. Presley walks into Sun Studio with the beat-up guitar his mother gave him when he was a child and tells the receptionist, Marion Keisker (Jill Jane Clements), that he would like to record a song for his mother. He asks her to let him know if they ever need a singer, then goes into a booth and sings "My Happiness." Record producer Sam Phillips (Tim Guinee) is not impressed by what he hears and doesn't even come out of the booth after Presley finishes singing. Always supportive of her son, Presley's mother is moved to tears when she hears the song. Presley does get a call from Sun Records that they have a song that could be right for him. But after hearing him sing it, Phillips thinks Presley sounds like other singers of the day. Frustrated, Presley begins to sing "That's All Right, Mama" with a different sound. Phillips records the song, which turns into a smash hit. October 16, 1954, Louisiana Hayride Auditorium - Presley belts out "Good Rockin' Tonight" while perfecting his gyrations and soon the crowd is so out of control that the promoter must announce at the end of Presley's performance that he has left the building to avoid pandemonium. It is during one of his performances at the Hayride that Presley first meets "Colonel" Tom Parker (Quaid), who manages some of the biggest singing acts in town. Parker tries to persuade Presley to make him his manager, promising that he will get him a record deal with RCA and roles in feature films. Although Parker doesn't like Presley's kind of music, he believes he can make him a worldwide star because he is a good salesman. Presley eventually signs with Parker, who makes good on his word. Presley's first RCA song, "Heartbreak Hotel," goes to Number One on Billboard magazine's pop, R&B and country charts. The song goes on to sell one million records and becomes Presley's first Gold Record. Presley and Parker argue about playing small venues. Presley wants to play big houses, but Parker wants lines outside of theaters because selling out shows makes Presley look appealing. When Presley questions Parker's tactics as a manager, he quickly tells Presley that a famous movie producer wants him to come to Hollywood for a screen test and that he has booked Presley to perform on "The Milton Berle Show." Presley tests for his first film, "The Rainmaker," and is beside himself with excitement at the prospect of working opposite Katharine Hepburn and Burt Lancaster. He is disappointed when Parker tells him they are turning the role down because Presley will not be the star of the film. While in Hollywood, Presley performs "Hound Dog" on "The Milton Berle Show." Critics pan the performance, saying that Presley's stage presence is suggestive and vulgar. Presley worries about the bad publicity but listens to Parker, who advises him to keep doing the gyrations because they help sell records. Presley is told by a judge that he will be arrested if he makes lewd movements while in Jacksonville, Fla. During a performance of "Don't Be Cruel," he is observed by police officers. Although he is not allowed to move his hips, Presley wiggles his pinky, still managing to make girls in the audience go wild. Soon Southern politicians, religious leaders and radio disc jockeys are condemning Presley's music. Presley is brought to court after a gas station manager hits him because he drew a large crowd of fans who wanted his autograph. The judge finds Presley to be innocent but the incident is enough to make his mother beg him to quit singing. Presley tells his mother that the music is stronger than he is and he could never walk away from it. He asks her to find a home in Memphis that will give them more privacy. She finds a home that Elvis names Graceland. While shooting "Love Me Tender," his first movie, Presley is disappointed to learn that he will have to sing in the film. Once again, he questions Parker's managerial decisions and tells him that he does not want to sing in films. Parker tells Presley to leave the managing to him and informs him that he has booked Presley on "The Ed Sullivan Show," a show on which he has longed to appear. Parker encourages Presley to go into the Army after he is classified 1-A because he thinks it will help clean up his image and would be good publicity. He tells Presley that he will be a bigger star than before when he returns from the Army. Night 2 In the Army, Presley is homesick and frequently calls his mother, telling her that he fears his fans will have forgotten about him when he is discharged in two years time. When his mother is hospitalized with liver failure, he is granted a leave so that he can visit her in Memphis. The night Presley goes to the hospital, Gladys Presley dies in her sleep. At his mother's funeral, he is inconsolable and feels guilty about his mother's death, believing that he contributed to it because he caused her to worry about him. Afterwards, Presley tells Parker that he wants to quit the music business because he thinks that's what his mother would want him to do. He quickly changes his mind once Parker reminds him that he will have to pay Parker for all commitments and obligations that he will be unable to fulfill by quitting early. While stationed in Germany, Presley begins taking pills to help him fall asleep and to help him wake up. He is also introduced to opera and records "It's Now or Never," which becomes a Number One Billboard hit. In Germany, Presley is introduced to 14-year-old Pri
Source: The Elvis Express / Updated: Apr 14, 2005 
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forelvis (profilecontact) wrote on May 19, 2005report abuse
was a total failure =P
MizMelody (profilecontact) wrote on May 13, 2005report abuse
Irishman Johnathan Rhys Meyer may not be as well known in America as rth other actors appearing in the movie but I think it only speaks to just how talented he is to be able to portray such a famous American icon-From what he said o a recent late show appearence I think he found the task rather daunting at first. Elvis' shoes are a big pair to fill and criticism would come to anyone attempting to step into them, even briefly. The producers saw him in the British hit "Bend It like Beckham" and had him in mind for the part from the get go. They offered him the part but he was commited to other projects at that time. They began organizing a nationwide search for anoher actor to play Elvis but before they could cast anyone else, Jonathan's schedule had opened up and he accepted the role. He ISN'T Elvis-and there will never be another an with the same charisma and style. But Jonathan is a superb actor, and he took on many of the difficult to emulate mannerisms and vocal qualities and in my humble opinion did as good as any actor could.
Bill E. Burk (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 22, 2005report abuse
1. Sam Phillips was NOT in the studio the day Elvis recorded "My Happiness." And he wasn't "driving a truck" (the old Crown Electric Myth being extended still further). 2. Priscilla's father was an AIR FORCE captain at that time. Retired a lieutenant colonel. 3. NO press conference "at the airport" when Elvis came home from the Army. A) he came home by train; and (B) that press conference was in Vernon's office in back of Graceland. I was at both A & B. 4. Priscilla "enrolled in a Catholic school instead of living with Elvis at Graceland." (A) The school has never had, still doesnt have, dormitories. My sister attended that school.(B) It is well-known PP was living with Graceland all that time.
CD King (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 17, 2005report abuse
The beatles's "Help" was and still is the dumbest movie I've ever seen, make "Kissin' Cousins" looks like a classic. By the way, Jonathan Rhys Meyer's hairstyle is not like Elvis' at all. For once why can't they get it right.
VanGogh (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 16, 2005report abuse
I think everybody is being too hard on this a little too fast. Sure, they very much screwed around with the events the way they actually happened, but it sounds like they are at least trying to paint a very sympathetic figure with Elvis. In other words, those people that kinda like Elvis a little bit, but don't understand why he would waste his talent on dumb movies while the Beatles were taking over, or why he played Vegas so much---well, it sounds like the movie puts the blame on Parker. It might not be comepletly right to villify him like that and have Elvis be such a victim, but then again, I think there's quite a bit of truth in it.
The thing about Vegas is that now it seems very uncool to be playing Vegas all the time (like Celine Dion), but it was cool then, I think. I really hope the drugs aren't a big part of this, and I hope it's clear that everything was prescribed by a doctor. I don't know; it might be terrible, but I am looking forward to it and am impressed by the casting
smudgedapple (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 15, 2005report abuse
The fact that it starts in 68 and has flashbacks tells you that its a vamped up version of the Kurt Russell movie. And Elvis wanted to play Vegas in 69 so the disheartened bit is rubbish. It lets people who know nothing about Elvis call themselves fans because they once heard 'Hound Dog' on the radio and saw Elvis in a bar. Any real fan doesn't need this.
Play it James (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 15, 2005report abuse
JSSTCB is right....They seem to tell the story they want without really focussing on what Elvis was thinking at the moment. Just for another example, when Elvis first went to record "My happiness" he was NOT trying to get the attention of a producer to sign a contract deal with a record label. He did it just for the thrill of it first and besides we all know that Sam Phillips was not there on Elvis's first visit. And for the part in the army where Elvis is thinking about quitting the music industry after his mother's sudden death, I don't recall anything quite like this. It sounds like the story was made up.
And by the way I still question the choice of (Rhys Meyers) for the main role. From what I've seen of the pictures I don't particularly like his features. I will certainly watch the mini-series anyway but I'm afraid to see him trying to gyrate like Elvis just in case I'm disappointed. I know I sound negative but it's such a big production that my expectations will be high...But I'll be fair by saying that we'll give them the chance to prove how right they've been to do so.
Scotch (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 15, 2005report abuse
"anybody that's an elvis fan already knows about his life and times."
This mini-series is being promoted with the slogan, "The legend you know, the story you don't". This mini-series is not for those who know what day Elvis learned to tie his shoes, it is for the millions that know Elvis is the "King of Rock'n'Roll", but don't know why. I am ok with some minor variations of events as long as the intent is to inform the uniformed of the greatness of "Presley".
JerryNodak (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 15, 2005report abuse
Someday someone will do an Elvis bio-pic and get the facts straight. Unfortunately, this isnt it. My blood pressure went up 20 points when I read the story outline. I'm NOT watching.
see see rider (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 15, 2005report abuse
please.... enough of these movies and made for tv movies. how many of these things have been made over the years? anybody that's an elvis fan already knows about his life and times.
bossanovababy (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 14, 2005report abuse
Sorry for being obnoxious, but what's with this 'Presley' business? Why are they constantly referring to him by his surname? It sounds too cold. It should be Elvis! TCB
jakobhaydensmom (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 14, 2005report abuse
I think that Camryn Manheim is a terrific choice as Gladys Presley and Randy Quaid as "Colonel" Tom Parker seems to be great too. I myself am not a big fan of the "Colonel" but I am a huge fan of Elvis as all of us are here, so of course I will be watching.
jsstcb (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 14, 2005report abuse
Yea, except this "Heated exchange" didn't happen till 74 or 75, and Elvis was excited about the returning to vegas in the beginning. to read this he acts dissapointed about return to live performances, and that was not true in 68. Why do they have to fudge history for another "what really happened story". Same thing on the Kurt Russell film with the death threat in 69 when it happened in 71. Elvis did put his foot down on the song selection, but he certainly wasn't pissed off through out the 68 special taping, let alone mad before singing "IICD", hell the outakes show that.
bossanovababy (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 14, 2005report abuse
Gas station manager...i`m sure i`ve got clips of that `case` as i`m sure everyone here has-was it not Elvis who allegedly hit him and the guy turned up as if he was half dead? Not watched it for a while so i could be a a bit jumbled?! TCB
CapiTrueno (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 14, 2005report abuse
It looks like Parker is the bad guy here... If only Elvis had really tried to fire Parker and we could put all the guilt of Elvis' death on the Colonel...

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