Big Elvis w/ True Romance
Director: Tony Scott Run Time: 132 min. Format: 35mm Rating: R Release Year: 1993
This year, the Tribeca Summer Series moves away from documentary to focus on up-and-coming short filmmakers who premiered at Tribeca this year who have been asked to select a feature the inspired them with directing their short film.
Pete is an Elvis Presley impersonator in Las Vegas, but Pete is not like any Elvis impersonator you may have in mind. Pete is BIG ELVIS! At his peak, Pete tipped the scales as a 960-pound performer, but not only is Pete preternaturally talented (one fellow impersonator asserts that he has a better voice than The King himself), he also believes himself (with good reason!) to be Presley’s actual, living son.
On why they chose TRUE ROMANCE:
“When I was 29, I started my commercial production and editorial company called Firebrand Films and ran it out of Ridley and Tony Scott’s New York SoHo office for 8 years. They were my mentors early on, and being at RSA was my film school. I digitized, studied and re-edited their films on an Avid to crack the code of their genius. TRUE ROMANCE was my favorite Tony Scott film, and I have watched it at least a hundred times. I was inspired by the way that Tony used Elvis Presley as a spiritual character in TRUE ROMANCE and was fascinated to discover that Pete ‘Big Elvis’ Vallee had the same spiritual qualities.”
The Quentin Tarantino penned TRUE ROMANCE certainly isn’t your run-of-the-mill love story but the passion (borderline obsession) between Clarence and his reformed hooker wife Alabama sure is palpable. A modern day Bonnie and Clyde, they meet, fall in love, and then proceed to steal a whole lot of drugs from her pimp. As with most things in love and life, things are never easy (there’s murders and mobsters), but the one thing that remains true is their romance.