TV Land will celebrate the life and times of music legend and pop icon Elvis Presley throughout the summer of 2007, it was announced today by Larry W. Jones, President, TV Land. Kicking off TV Land's tribute to Elvis in late July, TV Land and the city of Honolulu, Hawaii will honor Elvis with a life-sized bronze sculpture. The statue will grace The Neal S. Blaisdell Center, formerly The Honolulu International Center, the site of Elvis' 1973 Aloha from Hawaii concert, which was seen globally on television. Fans can log on today at TVLand.com to view video excerpts and photos from Elvis's historic Aloha From Hawaii performance. Following this momentous event, beginning August 1, 2007, TV Land will celebrate Elvis with an on-air tribute commemorating his unprecedented legacy throughout the entire month. From the '68 Comeback Special to Aloha from Hawaii to the documentary Elvis By The Presleys to his much-loved films like Love Me Tender and Wild in the Country, TV Land will showcase Elvis Presley's work every single day in August.
"Elvis is the ultimate icon of pop culture, especially to the Boomer generation, and one of the greatest entertainers of the 20th century," states Larry W. Jones. "Celebrating his legacy this August on TV Land will be a unifying event for current and future Elvis fans."
The "Everything Elvis" tribute encompasses the following:
LIFE-SIZED BRONZE SCULPTURE
The bronze sculpture, which will be unveiled in late July, will commemorate the historic Aloha from Hawaii event, portraying the King of Rock 'n' Roll as he appeared in that performance, and pay tribute to him during the 30th Anniversary year of his passing. Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc. has granted permission for this special tribute and will be involved in the approval process of the sculpture.
"Elvis remains an idol and a hero to so many of us, and because of his time spent here, Hawaii considers him an adopted son," states Mufi Hannemann, Mayor of the City and County of Honolulu. "Elvis will forever remain a part of Hawaii's identity -- from his film Blue Hawaii to his 1961 benefit performance to raise money for the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial to the historic concert which this sculpture commemorates. Honolulu is proud to be the home to this monument to the King at the very site of one of the most seminal performances in his career."
Aloha from Hawaii, which initially aired on NBC in April of 1973, was the first concert event ever to be beamed around the world by satellite. Carried live in some countries and by tape delay in others, the show was seen in over 40 countries by 1.5 billion people, a worldwide ratings smash. In America, 51% of the TV viewing households tuned in to watch Elvis perform. The soundtrack album went to Number One on the Billboard album chart and in America alone sales have earned the album a 5x Platinum award. Through the years, video and DVD releases and rebroadcasts have been tremendously successful.
The sculpture is the network's sixth work to honor people, places and moments from pop culture by recognizing the site as a "TV Land Landmark." The network's landmarks include: a bronze statue of Ralph Kramden of The Honeymooners at the entrance of New York City's Port Authority Bus Terminal; a sculpture of Mary Tyler Moore from The Mary Tyler Moore Show at Nicollett Mall in downtown Minneapolis, MN; The Andy Griffith Show statue in Raleigh's Pullen Park; a bronze statue of Bob Newhart commemorating his role as Dr. Robert Hartley on The Bob Newhart Show in Chicago and most recently, a tribute to the beloved series Bewitched with a life-size statue depicting a magical view of character Samantha Stevens, played by actress Elizabeth Montgomery, in Salem MA. Fans can visit TV Land.com to see photos, virtual tours of the statues as well as streaming video of some of the dedications. Studio EIS, a three- dimensional design and sculpture studio in New York founded by brothers Ivan and Elliot Schwartz, is creating the life-sized bronze sculpture. The studio also created The Andy Griffith Show statue, the statue commemorating Bob Newhart's role as Dr. Robert Hartley on The Bob Newhart Show and the statue of Samantha Stevens from Bewitched.
TV LAND ON-AIR TRIBUTE
It was thirty years ago this August that the world said goodbye to one of the greatest entertainers and cultural icons of all time - Elvis Presley. In a monumental tribute, TV Land will showcase a number of Presley's treasured work by airing films, concerts, documentaries and interstitial programming starring and about the King of Rock 'n' Roll every day throughout the month.
TV Land will air the following:
-- Performance specials -- Elvis: '68 Comeback Special, Aloha From Hawaii, Elvis: the Great Performancesand Ed Sullivan's Rock 'N' Roll Classics: Elvis Presley.
-- Documentaries -- Elvis By the Presleys, Elvis On Tour and Elvis: His Best Friend Remembers.
-- Movies -- Love Me Tender; Wild in the Country; Easy Come, Easy Go; Fun in Acapulco; Paradise Hawaiian Style; Roustabout; Girl Happy; Live a Little, Love a Little; Speedway and Elvis and Me.
Beginning today, TVLand.com will feature three video excerpts from Elvis's Aloha from Hawaii special. Log on to view Elvis Presley's performance of "See See Rider," "Hound Dog" and "Can't Help Falling in Love" as well as photos from the historic concert.