Marie on Estate Sale - Presley says she didn’t “go nuts”
Elvis Presley's daughter Lisa Marie sold eighty-five percent
of the multi-million Elvis Presley Estates last month to Robert
F.X. Sillerman, the billionaire investor announced his intention
to "take risks on bigger opportunities" with the King's name
exclusively with Rolling Stone, Presley confesses that the
decision to sell was not easy, and expresses confidence in
the direction in which Sillerman will take the Elvis brand.
not like I just went nuts and sold it," says Lisa Marie, who
in reality spent years searching for the right buyer. "I don't
know if people have this misconception that we're going to
build a giant casino on the lawn of Graceland, or that Elvis
condoms are going to be mass-distributed throughout the world,
but that's not going to happen."
who will manage the estate through his company CFX, declined
to offer specific marketing plans, but he says people shouldn't
expect Elvis to start appearing in TV commercials, or that
the market will be flooded with T-shirts and mini-Graceland
is more," he says. "I think overexposure diminishes the value
of Elvis." He does, however, see big money in Elvis' future
-- he may invest in projects such as Elvis-themed entertainment
in Las Vegas or in Japan and Europe, where the King's allure
is huge. More than half of the 10 million-plus sales of the
2002 release 30 #1 Hits came from outside America. Lisa Marie
retains fifteen percent of the estate, as well as the deed
to Graceland and all of Elvis' personal belongings.
also has veto power over any unorthodox new venture.
cannot do anything that hasn't been historically done," Presley
says of Sillerman. "That's the thing we still wanted control
of, and that was a big part of our process: 'Is this person
going to do something crazy that we have no control over?'
No stone was left unturned in making sure that that wasn't
the case. That's why it took a long time to find the right
bought the bulk of the estate for cash, stocks and debt forgiveness
totaling $100 million, including fifty percent of Elvis' publishing
rights (the singer sold the majority of his master rights
back to RCA in 1973).
mogul -- who sold his massive concert-promotion business,
SFX Entertainment, to radio conglomerate Clear Channel in
2001 for more than $4 billion -- plans to form partnerships
with a variety of artists through CFX.
who would have turned seventy on January 8th, has topped Forbes'
list of top dead-celebrity incomes for the past four years;
in 2003 the King made a profit of $12 million on nearly $45
million in revenues, mostly generated from merchandising and
December, a fan in North Carolina used eBay to sell some water
from a Styrofoam cup that Elvis supposedly drank from -- for
$455. (He recently sold an appearance by the cup itself. Winning
some fans on Elvis Web sites have expressed outrage over the
estate's sale, Lisa Marie says her father would be pleased.
"Would he have wanted me to do the best thing for the future,
for expanding the estate, for protecting his family?" she
asks. "The answer would have been 'Hell, yes.'"
(News, Source: rollingstone.com)