Love Me Tender (1956) Poster


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Of all the movies starring Elvis Presley, this is the only one in which he didn't get top billing. He was billed third, after Richard Egan and Debra Paget.
Possibly the first American film to use a "Squib hit" on an actor (using an explosive under clothing with a blood pack to simulate a bullet hit).
The footage of Elvis Presley singing "Love Me Tender" at the end was shot after preview audiences reacted badly to his character's fate. This new footage created a continuity error, as Elvis had dyed his hair black by the time of the additional shooting, while in the movie his hair color was closer to blonde.
Elvis Presley's real-life back-up musicians Scotty Moore, Bill Black and D.J. Fontana were not allowed to play the roles of the band in the movie because according to the casting director they didn't look like country musicians.
A record number of prints of "Love Me Tender" were struck in 1956 to accommodate the demand for Elvis Presley's movie debut.
Extra scenes and lines were added for Elvis Presley's character, which was originally supposed to be a minor role before he got the part.
In its opening weekend film it shot to #2 in Variety's list. Only James Dean's film Giant (1956) had more viewers.
Although originally slated to be an inexpensive "B" picture, it was upgraded to an "A" feature with a $1-million budget when Elvis Presley was signed to star. It reportedly made its production cost back in only the first three days of release.
Title was changed from "The Reno Brothers" to promote the title song sung by Elvis Presley.
The part of "Clint Reno" was originally offered to 20th Century-Fox contract players Robert Wagner and Jeffrey Hunter and also actor Cameron Mitchell before Presley got it on loan to Fox from Hal B. Wallis, to whom he was under contract.
Elvis Presley is credited as co-writer of the film's four songs, but in fact had little to do with writing them; it was just for purposes of royalties. Elvis did reveal at a 1968 press conference , when asked about his " lack of songwriting, in general" that he did contribute one line of lyrics to the title song, "Love Me Tender".
When the film played in theaters, Elvis Presley's fans were screaming so loud that audiences couldn't hear any of his lines.
Made back its production cost - approximately $1,000,000 - on its opening weekend.
Average Shot Length (ASL) = 9.5 seconds
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The film was produced by 20th Century-Fox but the premiere was at the Paramount Theater on Broadway in New York City. Thousands of fans were outside the building on the night of premiere. A huge paperboard with the image of Elvis Presley was on the outside of the building.
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Elvis Presley was later offered the starring role in director Robert D. Webb's next film, The Way to the Gold (1957), but 20th Century-Fox refused to pay the $250,000 plus 50% of the profits that Elvis' manager asked (Fox had offered $150,000 plus 50%).
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The title song, "Love Me Tender" was taken from the Civil War ballad "Aure Lea", written by W. W. Fosdick (words) and George R. Poulton (music). That song first appeared on the screen in 1936 sung by a Francis Farmer in "Come And Get It". It was adopted, almost from its' beginning, as the "school song" of The West Point Military Academy and was part of the soundtrack for The West Point Story (1950) and _The Long Grey Line (1954)_.
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The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

This is the only movie in which the character played by Elvis Presley dies on-screen.
First film in which the character played by Elvis Presley dies, the other being Flaming Star.

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