Elvis (1990 TV series)

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Elvis
MSG-Elvis.jpg
Michael St. Gerard
Genre Biography
Drama
Music
Created by Rick Husky
Priscilla Presley
Starring
Opening theme All Shook Up
performed by Ronnie McDowell
Composer(s) Steve Tyrell
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 13 (3 unaired)
Production
Executive producer(s)
Producer(s)
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) James D. Parriott Productions
Navarone Productions
Rick Husky Productions
New World Television
Release
Original network ABC
Original release February 6 – May 19, 1990

Elvis (also known as Elvis – Good Rockin' Tonight) is an American drama series about the early life of Elvis Presley that aired on ABC from February 6 until May 19, 1990[1] before its cancellation due to low ratings. These ten episodes, along with three unaired episodes, were edited into a four-hour mini-series titled Elvis: The Early Years. The series starred Michael St. Gerard as Presley, Jesse Dabson, Blake Gibbons, Millie Perkins, and Billy "Green" Bush. Elvis voice-impersonator Ronnie McDowell provided the singing voice for St. Gerard on the series.

Plot[edit]

Elvis: Good Rockin' Tonight was a series offering a faithful dramatic re-creation of Elvis' time just before becoming a major star. Focusing on Elvis in 1954-55 as he was beginning his recording career at Sun Records. It was the first time the true story of a rock star been dramatized in a weekly series[citation needed].

Production[edit]

Michael St. Gerard had played Presley twice before, in the 1989 films Great Balls of Fire! and Heart of Dixie; and once again after this series, in a 1993 episode of Quantum Leap.

Millie Perkins starred as the real Elvis's love interest in the 1961 film, Wild in the Country, here she plays his mother.

Matt Dillon and Scott Valentine were the first two choices for the role of Elvis.[2]

Michael St. Gerard's audition was a line read, and him lip syncing to "Baby, Let's Play House". He was flown to Memphis the next day to start filming. The brown-eyed St. Gerard refused to wear blue contacts for the role.[2][3]

Cast[edit]

Episodes[edit]

Episode Title Plot Air Date
1 Money, Honey Elvis records his first demo, My Happiness. His father injures his back, and forces Elvis to support the family. A year later, Sam Phillips calls to have Elvis come back into Sun Records, and work with some musicians, Scotty Moore and Bill Black. February 6, 1990
2 The Storm Elvis tries out a few songs at Sun Records, which leads to the recording of his first record, That’s All Right, Mama. The record is played on the air, and Elvis realizes his life is about to change. February 11, 1990
3 The Locket Elvis, Scotty, and Bill play their first gig. Elvis opens with a ballad, and then tears into Good Rockin’ Tonight, shaking his hips, driving the crowd wild. Elvis' girlfriend, fearing all the attention he is getting, gives him a locket. February 18, 1990
4 Bel Air Breakdown Elvis, Scotty and Bill go out on the road for their first tour. On the way, they encounter many troubles as they tour the country as the first rock 'n' roll group. March 4, 1990
5 Hole in the Pocket Elvis gets his first royalty check and spends it on a pink Cadillac. March 11, 1990
6 Roots Elvis, Scotty, and Bill get a show in Tupelo, Mississippi. Elvis meets up with old friends, and, after his show at the local all-white high school, sits in at an all-black blues club. March 18, 1990
7-8 Grand Ole Opry/Sun Sessions Elvis and the boys get the offer to perform at the Grand Ole Opry where, after their heads swell a bit, they go over like a lead balloon. They go back to Memphis with their tails between their legs, and struggle to record their next record. May 5, 1990
9 Bodyguards Fans start reacting to Elvis, and it becomes more than he can handle. May 12, 1990
10 Let it Burn Elvis is on the road with his band. He cheats on his girlfriend, and she catches him at it. May 19, 1990
11 Four Mules Elvis, Scotty and Bill book themselves at the Louisiana Hayride, the major radio show that gave Elvis his start. The subplot revolves around all of the characters being as stubborn as mules, the fourth "mule" being Sam Phillips. Unaired
12 Old Man Scotty struggles as Elvis’ manager and guitar player, and, by the end of the episode, Bob Neal has become their manager, and Scotty can focus on the music. Unaired
13 Moody's Blues Elvis (as a high school student), learns the blues from a Beale St. street musician. Unaired

References[edit]

  1. ^ The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows 1946-Present. Ballantine Books. 2003. p. 361. ISBN 0-345-45542-8. 
  2. ^ a b Worth, Fred, L. (1990). Elvis: His Life from A to Z. Contemporary Books. ISBN 978-0809240838. 
  3. ^ "Imdb.com".