Viva Las Vegas – MGM 1964
Elvis Presley’s fifteenth movie was ”Viva Las Vegas”, which was filmed July 15 – September 11, 1963. It opened nationwide on June 17, 1964 and became Elvis’ highest grossing film ever. It co-starred Ann-Margret.
Location filming took place in Las Vegas area locations including: the parking lot of the Sahara Hotel, Lake Mead Marina, a drag strip in the suburb of Henderson, the old Vegas Amusement Park in Henderson, a skeet shooting range at the Tropicana Hotel, the University of Nevada-Las Vegas gymnasium, McCarran Airport and the swimming pool at the Flamingo Hotel.
The wedding scene was shot at the Little Church of the West, which is a famous wedding chapel in Las Vegas listed on the U.S. National Registry of Historical Places as the oldest existing structure on the Las Vegas Strip. It has been the scene for many real celebrity weddings since the first one, the 1943 marriage of Betty Grable and Harry James.
Sporting the impossibly comic-book perfect names Lucky Jackson and Rusty Martin, the two stars forge a romance against the backdrop of the Vegas Grand Prix, which Elvis, naturally intends on winning.
Lucky Jordan arrives in Las Vegas for the big Grand Prix race, but has engine trouble. He also falls in love at first sight, with a girl, Rusty Martin. Not knowing her name or address and assuming she is one of the showgirls in Las Vegas, Lucky and his racing rival, Count Elmo Mancini, search various nightclubs for the girl. Unable to find her, they return to the hotel and Lucky spots the girl again. She is the swimming instructor at the hotel pool. He starts singing and romancing her, while repairing his engine and finally winning the Big Race.