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Lot 57: 1956 Elvis Presley's Signed Application for Screen Actors Guild
29 October 2016
Memphis, TN, USALive Auction
The start of any actor's career begins with completing an application for a SAG card, and Elvis was no exception. Early in 1956, Elvis had his screen test with Hal Wallis at Paramount, and on April 2, Wallis offered Elvis a contract for one motion picture with an option for six more and the provision that Elvis would be able to do at least one picture per year for another studio. Just months after this initial screen test for Wallis, Elvis signed the offered "Screen Actors Guild, Inc. Class A and AJ Applicants" form on August 21, 1956.
The form states in part, "I wish to be eligible to act in motion pictures and I am therefore applying for membership in the Screen Actors Guild. I understand the obtaining of employment is my own responsibility and it is not the function of the Screen Actors Guild to aid in securing employment for its members." Elvis certainly had no issue securing his own employment and began filming for The Reno Brothers (later renamed Love Me Tender) for 20th Century Fox the very next day, on August 22, 1956. Elvis would continue a long and fruitful film career with 33 movies to his credit. The application form is signed in black ink "Elvis Presley" and dated in black ink "Aug 21, 1956." The form measures approximately 5 3/16 by 8 1/2 inches (13.17 x 21.59 cm) and is accompanied by a letter from Richard Consola and a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.
Condition Report: The application is in excellent condition overall with a strong, bold signature. Minor fading to the edges from age, staple holes in the top left corner and a faint crease along the bottom half.