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Love Me Tender

 

 

Shooting began August 23, 1956 and completed October 8, 1956

Premiered November 15, 1956 in New York City at the Paramount Theater

Opened nationally on November 21, 1956

Television premier on December 11, 1963

Producer: David Weisbart

Director: Robert D. Webb

 

Plot:

The story is set in 1860, just after the Civil War. In this film, Elvis isn't the featured character but plays the secondary role of Clint Reno. This is the only Elvis Presley film in which Elvis is billed second. Clint is the youngest of four brothers, who is left behind to run the family farm while his three older brothers are away fighting the for the Confederacy. The eldest brother, Vance, is believed to have been killed in battle. Upon Vance's return from battle, he discovers that his youngest brother, Clint, has married his former sweetheart, Cathy. The love triangle eventually pits brother against brother, with the result ending in Clint's death. The brothers are reconciled as Clint lays dying in Cathy's arms.

Songs:

"We're Gonna Move"- Sung on the front porch of the Reno's home.

"Love Me Tender"-Sung on the front porch of the Reno's home right after "We're Gonna Move" and at the very end of the film.

"Let Me"-Sung at a community get-together to build a new schoolhouse.

"Poor Boy"-Sung immediately after "Let Me."

"Beautiful Dreamer" was played on the harmonica by a Union soldier at the Greenwood railroad station.

Cast

Vance Reno - Richard Egan

Cathy Reno - Debra Paget

Clint Reno - Elvis Presley

Mr. Siringo - Robert Middleton

Ray Reno - James Drury

Mr. Kelso - Ken Clark

Pardee Fleming - L. Q. Jones

1st Train Conductor - Jerry Sheldon

Auctioneer - Ed Mundy

Station Agent - Bobby Rose

Major Harris - Jay Jostyn

Bit - Ruell Shayne

Brett Reno - William Campbell

Mike Gavin - Neville Brand

Martha Reno - Mildred Dunnock

Major Kincaid - Bruce Bennett

Ed Galt - Russ Conway

Mr. Davis - Barry Coe

Jethro - Paul Burns

Storekeeper - James Stone

1st Soldier - Joe Di Reda

Paymaster - Tom Greenway

2nd Train Conductor - Steve Darrell

 

 

Production Notes:

The original title of the film was The Reno Brothers.

Love Me Tender was the only film in which Elvis did not receive top billing.

The original ending had Mildred Dunnock ringing the dinner bell for the three brothers working in the field. Pain was shown in the eyes of Dunnock and Debra Paget. The credits followed the scene. Another ending was filmed in October 1956 in which Elvis lived but it was not used.

Love Me Tender reached #2 in Variety's weekly list of top-grossing films. For the year 1956, it ranked #23.

 

Trivia:

The opening scenes took place on April 10, 1865, the day after General Robert E Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant at the Appomattox Court House in Virginia, thus ending the Civil War.

$12.250-Amount of the Union payroll taken by the Reno brothers when they robbed a Louisiana & Western train in Greenwood, LA, on April, 10, 1865.  In actuality, the first train robbery in U.S. history took place on October 6, 1866. when the Ohio & Mississippi Railroad was robbed of $10,000 at Seymour, Indiana. The gang that robbed the train was the Reno brothers.

The Union soldiers whose identities Vance Reno and his men assumed were from the 12th Michigan Cavalry.

The Reno brothers were from East Texas.

Randall's Raiders - Band of rebel cutthroats commanded by General Randall. Vance Reno served under General Randall.

The Reno brothers' father was John W. Reno 91798-1864)

"When Johnny Comes Marching Home" was heard on the soundtrack as the Reno brothers rode into their old homestead after the end of the Civil War.

Elvis's first words on screen: "Whoa!....Brett....Vance....They told us you were dead!"

Bedford, TX was a town near the Reno farm. 

Clint Reno was born in 1843  and died in 1865. 

Clint Reno's dying words: "Everything's gonna be all right."

Bloopers:

In a night scene in which Cathy is at her window crying, a car can be seen briefly in the background. A car? In the 1860's?

Click here for movie clips

 

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