The Las Vegas wedding ceremony trade is getting all shook up over a large Elvis Presley crackdown.
Vegas primarily has the market cornered in regard to Elvis-themed weddings, however that might all come to a screeching halt after Genuine Model Group, which licenses Elvis-related merchandise, issued a cease-and-desist letter to a number of Las Vegas chapels that lean into the “Hound Canine” singer’s deep Sin Metropolis ties.
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In its letter, which was obtained by the Las Vegas Evaluation-Journal, ABG specifies that “Elvis,” “Elvis Presley,” and “The King of Rock and Roll” are all protected emblems, and the corporate intends to cease the unauthorized use of “Elvis Presley’s identify, likeness, voice picture, and different components of Elvis Presley’s persona in ads, merchandise, and in any other case.”
The letter, which was despatched out on Could 19, warned that authorized motion may very well be taken towards an “infringing chapel.”
“This could not hit at a worse time. It isn’t a superb factor,” Clark County Clerk Lynn Goya mentioned the native newspaper. “It’d destroy a portion of our wedding ceremony trade. Plenty of folks would possibly lose their livelihood.”
Weddings are a $2 billion trade in Las Vegas, and Elvis-themed ceremonies make up a major a part of that quantity. In February, town issued its five-millionth wedding ceremony license.
The companies focused within the letter embrace chapels specializing in, or provide, Elvis ceremonies or have the King’s picture as a part of their identify and emblem, the report notes. Many chapels are already stripping the icon, who carried out in Vegas for years, from signage and web sites.
“This may very well be very damaging to our trade,” Melody Willis-Williams, president of Vegas Weddings and Viva Las Vegas Weddings, mentioned. “Most of us are small companies, and we’re up towards a superpower with some huge cash. It may kill us in lawyer charges to battle this.”
“Elvis weddings are synonymous with Las Vegas,” she continued, noting that her chapel does “1000’s” of Elvis ceremonies a 12 months.
In April, Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker had an unofficial Elvis-themed wedding ceremony after the Grammy Awards. In 2019, an Elvis impersonator presided over Joe Jonas and Sophie Turner’s authorized ceremony. The Elvis model can be having a little bit of a resurgence, as Baz Luhrmann’s “Elvis” is about to hit theaters on June 24. The movie stars Austin Butler because the singer and Tom Hanks as Elvis’ longtime supervisor, Colonel Tom Parker. Many chapels — a slew of whom are simply now recovering from the COVID pandemic — had been more likely to capitalize on the publicity surrounding the movie.
Some chapel operators assume there may very well be a loophole, noting there’s nothing stopping somebody from dressing up as Elvis and performing a ceremony, because the letter cannot regulate officiant’s clothes. Plus, Nevada’s “proper of publicity” statute already covers The King’s picture in tribute exhibits.
Kent Ripley, who co-owns Elvis Weddings and performs ceremonies because the “Jailhouse Rock” singer, informed the Evaluation Journal he hasn’t acquired a warning.
“We get bookings which were deliberate for 3, 4, 5 years to have an Elvis wedding ceremony,” he mentioned. “They wish to shield the Elvis model. However what are they defending by taking Elvis away from the general public?”