Ann-Margret, an ageless beauty and a source of raw energy and pure excitement, brought a much-needed breath of fresh air to the 1960s. This Swedish-born actress, now 81 years old, captivated audiences with her mesmerizing beauty, vibrant personality, and exceptional dancing abilities.
While her love affair with Elvis Presley garnered significant attention at the time, their deep connection persisted even after they both entered separate marriages.
In her autobiography, Ann-Margret described their relationship as that of true soul mates, outwardly shy but unrestrained within. Today, she is recognized as one of the true greats in the world of acting.
As one of classic Hollywood’s most exceptional live performers, her legacy is destined to endure for a long time.
Today, we delve into the captivating bond between Ann-Margret and Elvis Presley.
The exact moment when Ann-Margret and Elvis first encountered each other remains uncertain, but it is known that the blonde Swede won Elvis Presley’s heart while filming “Viva Las Vegas” in 1964. Ultimately, Presley chose to marry Priscilla, but Ann-Margret insists that she and the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll were soul mates. Their intense chemistry and love affair also had a significant impact on Elvis’ future wife.
The passion between Ann-Margret and Elvis was evident to everyone during the filming of “Viva Las Vegas.” Filmink noted, “She had so much energy and zest that she overshadowed her previous three male co-stars, but Elvis could match her. He was her best on-screen partner, and she was his.”
Their love wasn’t confined to the silver screen; their affection for each other extended beyond the camera.
Their attraction was immediate and potent.
“We both felt an electric current that surged through us,” Ann-Margret revealed. “It became an uncontrollable force.” According to Ann-Margret, Elvis wanted them to marry. Their dates often involved driving up a hill, overlooking the city, and engaging in heartfelt conversations.
Elvis occasionally requested complete solitude with Ann-Margret, which confirmed her special status in his life. It was a sign of Elvis’ trust in her, further strengthening their bond.
“We were truly soul mates, outwardly shy but unrestrained within. We both lived life on the edge and had our own ways of self-destruction… In many ways, if we set aside our celebrity and rapid achievements, we both remained childlike and emotionally insecure,” Ann-Margret wrote in her book.
However, there was one problem—Elvis was already in a relationship with Priscilla Presley. A year before the premiere of “Viva Las Vegas,” Elvis had asked 17-year-old Priscilla to move in with him in Memphis.
Although Priscilla was aware of Elvis’ infidelity, she viewed his affair with Ann-Margret as a genuine threat. Elvis denied everything, but Priscilla knew the truth. She feared the stunning blonde in the lead-up to her wedding. Ultimately, Ann-Margret’s energetic and charismatic personality, which mirrored Elvis, clashed with his traditional and conservative views on marriage. Priscilla Presley fit the profile, but Ann-Margret did not.
They continued exchanging love letters after “Viva Las Vegas,” but Elvis eventually realized that he had to end his relationship with Ann-Margret.
“We knew that our relationship had to end, that Elvis needed to honor his commitment,” Ann-Margret revealed in her book.
Their romance’s conclusion was a “confusing situation.”
“There were other factors in Elvis’ life that pushed us apart, and I understood them,” she said. Although their romantic relationship came to an end, the couple maintained contact even after Elvis’ marriage to Priscilla. “The King” would send her guitar-shaped floral bouquets every time she performed in Las Vegas.
Ann-Margret and Elvis remained lifelong friends, and when she didn’t receive any flowers after a show in 1977, she knew that The King had passed away. Ann-Margret was the only female co-star of Elvis’s to attend his funeral.
Reflecting on Ann-Margret’s remarkable career, this 81-year-old actress and artist has graced the silver screen with unforgettable moments and delivered iconic songs that continue to resonate today.
Born in Sweden in 1941, this bona fide Hollywood legend rose to stardom in the 1960s. Ann-Margret hails from a tiny village in northern Sweden where, as she fondly recalls, only 160 residents remained when she and her family departed for the United States in 1946.
Ann-Margret’s breakthrough came as a singer, earning her the moniker of the female version of Elvis Presley. Hollywood soon recognized her as the complete package, especially given the intensity she brought to her performances.
With a career spanning over six decades since 1961, her most significant role came in 1963 when she starred as the all-American teenager Kim from Sweet Apple, Ohio, in the musical romantic comedy “Bye Bye Birdie.” The movie achieved immense success, and Ann-Margret graced the cover of Life Magazine twice.
Ann-Margret takes immense pride in her career, but she considers her long-lasting marriage to actor and manager Roger Smith the highlight of her life. The couple exchanged vows in 1967 and remained together until Roger’s tragic death in 2017.
Despite her initial sadness during their Las Vegas civil wedding ceremony, which was far from what she had envisioned, Ann-Margret and Roger Smith shared an extraordinary bond. They were a devoted couple who stood by each other through thick and thin.
“In Roger, I found all the men I needed rolled into one—a father, a friend, a lover, a manager, a businessman,” the actress shared in an interview. “It’s perfect for me. I couldn’t exist without a strong man.” Ann-Margret still resides in the house they purchased in Los Angeles in 1968.
Like any relationship, Ann-Margret and Roger faced their fair share of challenges. They tried to have children for 13 years but were unsuccessful. Ann-Margret explored various options, including fertility treatments, but ultimately accepted that she would not conceive. Instead, she dedicated herself to being the best possible stepmother to Roger’s three children from a previous relationship.
Roger’s passing in 2017, when Ann-Margret was 76 years old, did not come as a shock. He had retired from acting in the 1980s due to his battle with myasthenia gravis, a condition affecting the veins and nerves, and also suffered from Parkinson’s disease. Throughout his extended illness, Ann-Margret committed herself entirely to caring for her husband.
“I kept saying no to everything because I was taking care of him. When one of you has a broken wing, the other takes over,” she revealed.
While Ann-Margret mourned her husband’s death, she found solace in their shared memories. As a close friend disclosed, “To her, a great love story doesn’t end with death. You carry their spirit with you.”
Passion for Motorcycles
In 2023, this talented woman continues to lead a fulfilling life. She possesses a fondness for motorcycles and owns a lavender-colored Harley Davidson.
The 81-year-old actress, who still radiates beauty, relishes the sensation of horsepower beneath her and the wind in her hair. She’s not ready to bid farewell just yet.
“When I ride somewhere, to a biker place, mine is the only lavender bike there. Among all the Harleys and Ducatis, there’s mine, lavender with flowers. It’s interesting. They get a kick out of it,” she chuckled.
According to CBS, Ann-Margret remains actively involved in Hollywood and appeared in the TV movie “A Holiday Spectacular” in 2022. She has also found love again, though she chooses to keep her partner’s identity private. Falling in love once more brings her a sense of joy and fulfillment.
“I’m grateful for everything, and I’m very thankful to have another day,” the Swedish native expressed in an interview with CBS.
Ann-Margret has had a remarkable career, and her unwavering commitment to her husband during his lengthy illness will forever be admired.