THE PRICE OF FAMEYou’re 26 and single, romantically unattached, handsome, healthy and wealthy, and you’re in Hawaii, a spot noted for pretty girls and nice places to take them. So what do you do in the evenings?
Well, if you’re Elvis Presley, you stay in your hotel rooms every night, have your meals sent up, study your dialogue for “Blue Hawaii,” the movie you are here to make, play some cribbage with one of your friends in the location company, maybe exercise a bit, read a while – and go to bed, perhaps wishing you could get out in the balmy evening and mix a little without being mobbed by squealing fans.
By the time he returns to Paramount Studios in Hollywood to complete “Blue Hawaii,” Elvis will probably have seen more of the scenic spots and less of the night life than 95% of the people who visit the Paradise of the Pacific.
Since Producer Hal Wallis planned “Blue Hawaii” as a movie which, as the story unfolds will have a background which is virtually a travelogue of the island beauty spots, Elvis spends his working hours on locations all over Oahu and Kauai, up in the rain-washed mountain heights, the broad fields of pineapples, the lush greenery of the rolling lowlands and idyllic beauty of tawny beaches and tropic coves.
And, his day’s work finished, he returns to his hotel suite where he has all the freedom of a convicted man.
Upon arrival, Presley was greeted at Honolulu Airport by a police escort and several thousand wild-eyed fans who nearly broke down the barriers before Elvis was put in a car and whisked to his hotel, hurried through another waiting mob and up to his quarters in the Hilton Hawaiian Village.
Since then, security guards have been on duty 24 hours a day to insure him a little rest and privacy, intercept the squadron of fans who try every ruse and route to get to their idol.
But if those who are turned back in droves feel frustrated, so is the object of their futile forays.
“It’s mighty pretty country here,” says Elvis, “and the people are so friendly I wish I could get to know them - and I would sure like to get around and see things after working hours in the evening.”
But he cannot. At night Elvis can look down from his windows at the myriad lights stretching up from the shore to the skyline of dark peaks, see the white surf in the moonlight, all the way to Diamond Head, where others stroll in happy obscurity.
He can take a few deep breaths of the flower-scented air, perhaps permit himself a moment of envy for those less famous before turning out the lights and going to bed.
Even when you can’t go any place at night, 6 a.m. rolls around pretty early in the morning.
Elvis Monthly, July 1961