A Reporter Was Warned Not to ‘Push [His] Luck’ With Elvis After Asking This Innocent Question

<p id=”par-1_70″>While <a href=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/tag/elvis-presley/”>Elvis Presley</a> was one of the <a href=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertainment/priscilla-presley-shared-elvis-immense-career-success-became-real-life-nightmare-relationship.html/”>most famous people</a> of the 20th century, he didn’t often give interviews to reporters. He wanted whatever privacy he could get, which was very little given that fans often gathered outside his home. When Elvis did grant reporters interviews, they had to be careful about the types of questions they asked. When one reporter asked a seemingly straightforward question, Elvis immediately grew uncomfortable. </p>

<h2 id=”h-elvis-did-not-want-to-give-a-reporter-much-information”>Elvis did not want to give a reporter much information</h2>

<p id=”par-2_48″>In 1969, reporter William Otterburn-Hall met Elvis on the <a href=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertainment/elvis-presley-mary-tyler-moore-revealed-slept.html/”>set of <em>Change of Habit</em></a>. He was hoping to meet Elvis’ manager, Colonel Tom Parker, as well, but nobody seemed to know where he was. Before Otterburn-Hall spoke to Elvis, a publicist warned him not to ask any prying questions. </p>

<p id=”par-3_34″>“You won’t probe too deep, will you?” the publicist asked, as Otterburn-Hall recalled in a piece for <a target=”_blank” href=”https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/elvis-presley-on-set-you-wont-ask-elvis-anything-too-deep-69906/” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>Rolling Stone</a>. “This is just an informal chat, that’s the deal. So keep it light and airy, okay?”</p>

<figure class=”wp-block-image size-full” id=”emb-1″><img decoding=”async” width=”1200″ height=”932″ src=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?strip=all&quality=89″ alt=”A black and white picture of Elvis standing on a stage in front of a microphone. He has a guitar.” class=”wp-image-3613790″ srcset=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg 1200w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?w=640&h=497 640w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?w=768&h=596 768w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?w=1024&h=795 1024w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?w=451&h=350 451w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?w=218&h=169 218w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?w=200&h=155 200w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?w=653&h=507 653w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?w=300&h=232 300w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-audience.jpg?w=77&h=60 77w” sizes=”(max-width: 1200px) 100vw, 1200px”><figcaption class=”wp-element-caption”>Elvis Presley | Bettmann/Contributor via Getty</figcaption></figure>

<p id=”par-4_62″>They spoke about the film and Elvis’ plans for the future. Eventually, Elvis had to return to set. Before he walked away, however, Otterburn-Hall asked where Parker was. The question stopped Elvis “in his tracks.” Elvis mumbled, “I think he’s in Palm Springs. I’m not sure . . . ” before hurrying away. Once he was gone, the publicist turned on Otterburn-Hall.</p>

<p id=”par-5_31″>“Don’t let’s push our luck any more,” he said. “We never trouble him for too long a time. You should be very happy. You had more than anyone’s had in years.”</p>

<p id=”par-6_55″>Though no one explained why the question made Elvis uncomfortable, he had a fraught relationship with Parker. While he listened to everything Parker told him to do, Elvis did not always agree with the direction his career was taking. In 1970, he even told his father <a href=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertainment/elvis-fled-state-telling-father-fire-colonel-tom-parker.html/”>to fire Parker</a>, though he quickly walked back the demand. </p>

<h2>Priscilla Presley said Elvis rarely spoke to reporters</h2>

<p id=”par-7_34″>Though Elvis may have wanted to avoid talking about his manager, it’s also possible that he had simply tired of talking to the reporter. According to Priscilla Presley, he didn’t particularly like giving interviews. </p>

<p id=”par-8_23″>“He just never got into the fame thing,” she said, per <a target=”_blank” href=”https://www.express.co.uk/entertainment/music/1628372/elvis-presley-interview-priscilla-presley” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>Express</a>. “He performed, but if you look back he hardly did any interviews.”</p>

<p id=”par-9_22″>Elvis was a highly private person despite his fame. He wanted to keep some parts of himself away from the public eye.</p>

<p id=”par-10_22″>“He did what he was supposed to do, but he wasn’t into it,” Priscilla said, adding, “He was a very private person.”</p>

<h2>Priscilla Presley found it worrisome when he spoke publicly about his personal life</h2>

<p id=”par-11_48″>Elvis was so private that Priscilla took it as a sign of trouble when he spoke too openly. After their divorce, she watched him go on a number of <a href=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertainment/priscilla-presley-watched-semi-incoherent-rant-filled-elvis-show-shock-watching-different-person.html/”>rants during a concert</a>. She could hardly believe that he would be so vulnerable in front of his audience.</p>

<figure class=”wp-block-image size-full” id=”emb-2″><img decoding=”async” loading=”lazy” width=”1200″ height=”805″ src=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?strip=all&quality=89″ alt=”A black and white picture of Elvis Presley kissing Priscilla Presley on the cheek and holding her hand on their wedding day.” class=”wp-image-3607472″ srcset=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg 1200w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?w=150&h=100 150w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?w=640&h=429 640w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?w=768&h=515 768w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?w=1024&h=687 1024w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?w=522&h=350 522w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?w=252&h=169 252w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?w=200&h=134 200w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?w=756&h=507 756w, https://www.cheatsheet.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Elvis-entourage-1.jpg?w=89&h=60 89w” sizes=”(max-width: 1200px) 100vw, 1200px”><figcaption class=”wp-element-caption”>Priscilla and Elvis Presley | Bettmann/Contributor via Getty</figcaption></figure>

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<a href=”https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertainment/elvis-sedated-spending-entire-night-violently-ranting-priscilla-presleys-new-boyfriend.html/”>
Elvis Had to Be Sedated After Spending an Entire Night Violently Ranting About Priscilla Presley’s New Boyfriend </a>
<p id=”par-12_91″>“I was in shock,” she said per the book <em>Careless Love: The Unmaking of Elvis Presley</em> by Peter Guralnick. “Because [in the past] he would never, ever let on to the audience what his emotions were. You know, singing was always his way of venting his emotions, how he felt about something — and he’d get onstage and sing his heart out … This was [so] out of character, for someone who had so much pride, you know — everything he was against, he was displaying. It was like watching a different person.”</p>

<p id=”par-13_18″>During this concert, Elvis went into detail about his divorce, Priscilla’s new boyfriend, and his rumored drug use.</p>

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