Elvis Presley is known for being a rock n roll heartthrob and was no stranger to scandal. He reportedly fell in love with Hollywood star Joan Blackman while entangled in two other relationships.
Elvis Falls in Love
The two celebrities met in 1957, one year before Elvis left for his military service. Elvis repeatedly begged Joan to co-star in one of his movies and she continuously refused. Stating, “I wanted parts because of my ability, not because I was dating Elvis.” Ultimately, she did end up agreeing and in 1961 the couple co-starred in Blue Hawaii. The pair had incredible chemistry both on and off-screen. In fact, their on-screen chemistry was so strong that the following year Joan was cast alongside Elvis in Kid Galahad. Several years later, in 1977, Joan did an interview in which she claimed, “When we first set eyes on each other, there was a spark, a magic in the air… There was just that special something between us, sometimes so warm and wonderful you could almost reach out and touch it.”
The couple had a brief romance but, ultimately, weren’t destined to be together. Joan explained the relationship she had with Elvis was special and that after filming Blue Hawaii, Elvis made it clear she was the one he wanted. “We had rooms next to each other in the hotel, and for weeks we just lived together. He really wanted me as his wife.” The truth was that Joan had eyes for someone else. “I was in love with another actor, Hampton Fancher III. Elvis knew about it. When he would ask me about Hampton, I would answer, ‘I love him, El. I love him like a woman loves a man she wants to share her life with.’
It would seem that Joan Blackman was in the midst of her own love triangle. When she told Elvis she was in love with Hampton, she also happened to be married to Joby Baker. Their union lasted only two short years, and one might speculate her wondering eyes played part in her divorce. Joan never ended up with Hampton and married Rockne Tarkingington in 1968. They, too, had a short union but had two children before their divorce in 1970.
Read: Before Lisa Marie Presley’s Death, Her Ex Tried to Save Her After Cardiac Arrest
Pursuing other Relationship Ventures
Although Elvis had loved Joan, the pair seemed never to find themselves in the right circumstances to be together. As a result, Elvis saw fit to pursue his relationships with Anita and Priscilla until Anita walked away, leaving Elvis to marry the woman who would become the mother of his child.
The same year Elvis met Joan, he’d been courting Anita Wood. The pair were on the fast track to marriage and starting a family. However, things would change drastically when Elvis left for duty and met Priscilla Beaulieu in Germany. They met in 1959 when Elvis was 24 and Priscilla was only 14. US Airman Currie Grant had introduced them, and on Christmas Eve of 1966, Elvis proposed. They were married a year later at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas and had Lisa Marie the following year.
So, what happened to Anita and Elvis? Well, after returning home from his military service, Elvis and Anita had gotten into a fight about “fan mail” from Priscilla. A few months later, while speaking with his friend, Elvis explained he couldn’t decide who to be with. Anita overheard the conversation and decided to leave, helping Elvis make up his mind.
Elvis was a great musician with a voice that captivated women everywhere. Moreover, he was a handsome fellow, which made him much more appealing to his fans. However, it’s clear that he struggled internally to decide what he really wanted. Perhaps he was never satisfied.
Perhaps it was because the woman he truly loved didn’t love him back. Either way, Elvis moved forward with his life, had a beautiful family, and tragically died very young. Unfortunately, his untimely death at age 42 brought about the heartbreak of fans worldwide. He died of a heart attack, and it has since been speculated that it resulted from his addiction to prescription medications.
The King of Rock n Roll lives on in the hearts of his fans and still, today is credited with being one of the biggest musical influences of all time.
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- “Joan Blackman Elvis Presley co-star Blue Hawaii 1961.” Elvis Presley News. Retrieved February 9, 2023.
- “Elvis and Blue Hawaii Star ‘we lived together. he wanted to marry me’.” Express. Stefan Kyriazis. April 27, 2021.