How old was Priscilla Presley when she met Elvis?

Priscilla Presley, whose relationship with Elvis Presley is chronicled in the film Priscilla, a biopic now available to US home viewers on the streaming platform Max, met the legendary musician when she was just 14 years old.

The pair were introduced in 1959 in the former West Germany, where Elvis was completing his military service. Already a major star, he was 24 at the time.

“I saw Elvis trying to get my attention”

In an essay for People magazine in 1985, Priscilla recalled Elvis’ immediate interest in her at their initial meeting, at a gathering in Wiesbaden. “We made small talk for a while,” wrote the now 78-year-old, who lived in West Germany as a youngster as her stepfather was stationed there with the US army. “Then Elvis got up and walked over to the piano and sat down. He sang Rags to Riches and Are You Lonesome Tonight? and then with his friends singing harmony, At the End of a Rainbow.

“I saw Elvis trying to get my attention. I noticed that the less response I showed, the more he began singing just for me. I couldn’t believe that Elvis Presley was trying to impress me.”

Early relationship “more in mind and thought”

Speaking at the Venice Film Festival last year, Priscilla recalled her parents’ concern over Elvis’ attraction to their teenage daughter, saying they found it “very difficult […] to understand”. However, the actor and businesswoman insisted that she and Elvis did not sleep together at that point in their relationship. Indeed, Priscilla says she remained a virgin until they married eight years after meeting.

“I was the person who really sat there to listen and to comfort him,” she told audience members in Italy before a screening of Priscilla. “That was really our connection. Even though I was 14, I was actually a little bit older in life, not in numbers, and that was the attraction.”

Priscilla added: “People think, ‘Oh, it was sex, it was this.’ Not at all. I never had sex with him. He was very kind, very soft, very loving. But he also respected the fact I was only 14 years old. We were more in mind and thought and that was our relationship.”

Priscilla moves to Memphis at 17

After Elvis returned to the US in 1960, he and Priscilla continued to talk on the phone, and she visited him in the States two years later. In early 1963, Priscilla’s mother and stepfather allowed the then-17-year-old to leave West Germany and move to Memphis, where Elvis lived, to finish high school – as long as she stayed with his father and stepmother. Soon after, however, Priscilla was permitted to move into Elvis’ Graceland estate, after he promised her parents he intended to marry their daughter.

“Declaring his intentions honorable, he swore that he loved and needed and respected me,” Priscilla wrote in People. “In fact, he couldn’t live without me, he said, intimating that one day we’d marry. In that light, there was little my parents could do but say yes, and eventually they did.”

When did Priscilla and Elvis get married?

Priscilla and Elvis married in Las Vegas on 1 May 1967, and the following year had their only child together, Lisa Marie Presley, who died in January 2023. The couple divorced in 1973, four years before Elvis’ death at the age of 42.

Priscilla – watch the trailer:

Watch Priscilla on Max

A film on which Priscilla Presley served as an executive producer, Priscilla is based on her 1985 memoir, Elvis and Me, and is directed by Oscar winner Sofia Coppola. The movie is available on demand to Max subscribers, having been released on the HBO streaming service on Friday 23 February.

Ad-free Max subscriptions start at $15.99 a month or $149.99 a year, while there is also a cheaper plan, with ads, that costs $9.99 a month or $99.99 a year.

Starring Cailee Spaeny as Priscilla and Jacob Elordi as Elvis, Priscilla was released in US cinemas in late October 2023, grossing just over $20 million at domestic theatres, according to figures compiled by Box Office Mojo.

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