Could this Vegas tradition be coming to an end?
It’s hard to imagine Vegas weddings without the king himself. Elvis impersonators have been a long and beloved Las Vegas tradition, but that may soon change. That’s because the company that controls the rights to Elvis Presley’s likeness has recently cracked down on chapels offering Elvis Presley ceremonies.
The decision has shocked many in the wedding chappel business and those who plan on getting hitched by the king of rock n’ roll.
In 2013 the Authentic Brands Group (ABG) acquired a controlling stake in Elvis Presley’s estate. However, they recently shocked Sin City by sending cease-and-desist letters to companies offering this traditional Vegas wedding last month.
The surprising decision could affect many local businesses, including chapel owners and the Elvis impersonators. The mayor of Vegas is stepping in and calling for an open conversion rather than legal action. “Elvis Presley long called Las Vegas his home, and his name has become synonymous with Las Vegas weddings,” Jason Whaley, president of the Las Vegas Wedding Chamber of Commerce, told AFP.
Although Elvis musical tribute acts are allowed and protected under Nevada law, the use of Presley’s likeness to attract publicity and customers is not protected.
Concerns from the public over the livelihood of chapel owners and performers seem to increase the chances for arrangement between the chappels and the estate. The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported that ABG was now offering chapels financial “partnerships,” including annual licensing deals, to continue business as usual.
The timing of ABG’s cease-and-desist letters almost perfectly lines with the release of Baz Luhrmann’s highly anticipated new biopic “Elvis.” Luhrmann is known for his opulent large-scale films. His latest Warner Bros production is set to reinvigorate interest in the legendary singer.
Elvis-themed weddings are synonyms with Vegas and have become a beloved tradition that has attracted a lot of business since the 1970s.
Recently Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Backer had a last-minute Vegas ceremony where it was reported that Kardashian insisted on Elvis being in attendance.
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