The Las Vegas marriage ceremony business is getting all shook up over an enormous 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 Overview-Journal, ABG specifies that “Elvis,” “Elvis Presley,” and “The King of Rock and Roll” are all protected logos, and the corporate intends to cease the unauthorized use of “Elvis Presley’s title, 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 Might 19, warned that authorized motion may very well be taken in opposition to an “infringing chapel.”
“This could not hit at a worse time. It isn’t an excellent factor,” Clark County Clerk Lynn Goya mentioned the native newspaper. “It would destroy a portion of our marriage ceremony business. Various individuals may lose their livelihood.”
Weddings are a $2 billion business in Las Vegas, and Elvis-themed ceremonies make up a major a part of that quantity. In February, the town issued its five-millionth marriage 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 title and brand, 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 business,” Melody Willis-Williams, president of Vegas Weddings and Viva Las Vegas Weddings, mentioned. “Most of us are small companies, and we’re up in opposition to a superpower with some huge cash. It may kill us in lawyer charges to combat this.”
“Elvis weddings are synonymous with Las Vegas,” she continued, noting that her chapel does “hundreds” of Elvis ceremonies a 12 months.
In April, Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker had an unofficial Elvis-themed marriage 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 ready 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 — have been more likely to capitalize on the publicity surrounding the movie.
Some chapel operators suppose 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 reveals.
Kent Ripley, who co-owns Elvis Weddings and performs ceremonies because the “Jailhouse Rock” singer, advised the Overview Journal he hasn’t acquired a warning.
“We get bookings which have been deliberate for 3, 4, 5 years to have an Elvis marriage ceremony,” he mentioned. “They need to shield the Elvis model. However what are they defending by taking Elvis away from the general public?”