The Ending Of Elvis Explained

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  The Ending Of Elvis Explained

After the screen fades to black, we get a series of post-scripts filling us in on how the saga of Elvis and the Colonel played out in the years after Presley’s death. The film plays loose with what Presley and the rest of the world knew about Parker’s background; in real life, it wouldn’t be until 1980 when anyone could confirm that he was of Dutch descent and entered the country illegally as a 30-year-old man (per Smithsonian). Eventually, though, Parker’s financial malfeasance came to light, and after a series of lawsuits brought on by Elvis Presley Enterprises, a judge ruled in 1982 that Parker had no legal claim to any part of the Presley estate.

In his final two decades, Parker spent his days in Las Vegas, puttering around one casino floor or another, pouring his immense wealth down the drain. He made few public appearances or statements in those years, emerging from the shadows only on rare occasions such as the 1993 release of the Elvis postage stamp (via The Washington Post). Presley, meanwhile, far from the forgotten lounge singer he feared he’d become, remains an international superstar nearly 50 years after his death, and one of the highest-earning dead celebrities of all time, according to Newsweek. His life and work still inspire admiration and controversy. As any visitor to Memphis or Las Vegas can attest, Elvis remains hard at work, and in a way, so does Colonel Tom Parker.

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