a double tap of elvis’ pink cadillac in zombieland

Es­ti­mated reading time is 4 min­utes.

ELVIS AS A MYTHIC FIGURE has played a part in many Hol­ly­wood movies since his death in 1977. Most of these movies treat the man and the myth with re­spect, humor, and even irony. I am not re­fer­ring to movies where a Presley track is used as part of the back­ground music but where the “essence” of the Elvis myth/legend is in­te­gral to the plot.

Anyone who saw the orig­inal 2009 movie Zom­bieland had a treat. It starred Woody Har­relson, Jesse Eisen­berg, Emma Stone, and Abi­gail Breslin as sur­vivors of a zombie apoc­a­lypse. The film fol­lows a col­lege kid who meets three strangers and they take a road trip across the South­western United States trying to find sanctuary.

Like so, so many follow-ups, Zom­bieland – Double Tap is nowhere near as good as the first one.

There was no Elvis in that movie but it was a hoot anyway. (Yes, it’s a comedy-zombie-apocalypse movie.) The movie was a hit, making every­body lots of money.

So, of course, a follow-up fol­lowed. Zom­bieland – Double Tap, ten years later. Like so, so many follow-ups in Hol­ly­wood’s check­ered his­tory, it’s nowhere near as good as the first one.

In fact, I would sug­gest you stay away from it and keep your fond mem­o­ries of the first movie un­tainted by the second one.


Zombieland DoubleTap Woody as Elvis 1500 crop

Woody Har­relson as an Elvis wannabe in ZOM­BIELAND 2. He sings “Burning Love” as part of the movie’s sound­track and doesn’t em­bar­rass him­self.

It takes a real man to double tap

Un­less, of course, you’re an Elvis fan, like Woody Har­relson is in real life and his char­acter, Tal­la­hasse (they’ve all dropped their parent-given monikers and are called by the place they are from). No spoilers here, just that Woody gets to dress like a bad Elvis im­per­son­ator and act out his Pres­leyan fan­tasies. It’s dumb as schidt on a stick but Elvis fans will get a kick out of it anyway.

The group finds a 1957 Cadillac Se­ries 62 and it’s painted pink, causing Tal­la­hassee to quip that “It takes a real man to drive a pink Cadillac.” They use the car to con­tinue their journey in search of a safe respite.


Elvis PinkCadillac Graceland 1000

The real Caddy was a 1955 Fleet­wood Se­ries 60, seen here in front of the real Grace­land, a 1939 Colo­nial Revival-style man­sion.

Elvis Rose

I re­lied on Wikipedia’s entry on Pres­ley’s pink Cadillac for the nut­shell his­tory of that car:

•  In March 1955, Elvis bought a used, pink 1954 Fleet­wood Se­ries 60 to trans­port him­self, Bill Black, and Scotty Moore to their gigs.

•  In June 1955, that car was de­stroyed when a brake lining caught fire be­tween Hope and Texarkana, Arkansas.

•  In July 1955, Elvis bought a new blue Cadillac Fleet­wood Se­ries 60 with a black roof. He had the car’s body re­painted a cus­tomized pink (dubbed Elvis Rose). Elvis gave this car to his mother but, as she didn’t drive, he again used the car to drive his band around. This may rank as the most fa­mous car in the world that was ac­tu­ally used in everyday life.

•  In Sep­tember 1955, an on­coming ve­hicle that was in the process of passing a pickup truck drive into the Fleet­wood, causing con­sid­er­able damage. Elvis had it repaired.

•  In March 1956, Elvis had the roof painted white.

•  In late 1960, Elvis bought a white 1961 Cadillac Coupe de Ville with a pink roof.

•  Elvis loaned the ’55 Fleet­wood 60 to new buddy Joe Esposito.

Presley bought more Cadil­lacs through the years but none as fa­mous as the pink Cadil­lacs. Many sites state that the orig­inal pink Cadillac re­mains on per­ma­nent dis­play at Grace­land, in­cluding the Grace­land site. Yet the car on dis­play in Mem­phis is the 1955 Fleet­wood, Elvis’ second Cadillac. Also, the model car that is sold as a repli­cated ver­sion of the Elvis car is a 1959 Cadillac Se­ries 62 Convertible!

Mary Kay Cos­metics has their top rep­re­sen­ta­tives drive pink Cadil­lacs. This leads me to an­other movie with Elvis as an es­sen­tial part of the back­drop: Elvis Has Left The Building with John Cor­bett and Kim Basinger. Basinger plays a sales­person for a cos­metic com­pany who drives to all her meet­ings in a pink, 1973 Fleet­wood Eldorado.

But let’s save that movie (and the fact that Denise Richards plays an Elvis im­per­son­ator) and for an­other article . . .


 Zombieland: Double Tap: cast driving in a pink 1957 Cadillac.

FEA­TURED IMAGE: The photo at the top of this page is a scene from Zom­bieland – Double Tap with Woody Har­relson be­hind the wheel of a pink Cadillac. Fi­nally, ac­cording to Wikipedia, a double tap is “a shooting tech­nique where two shots are fired in rapid suc­ces­sion at the same target with the same sight pic­ture. In­struc­tion and prac­tice of the double-tap im­prove overall ac­cu­racy as shooters often do not have the gun fully ex­tended on the first shot meaning the second of a double-tap is usu­ally the better.”

Fi­nally, to hear Woody sing Burning Love, click here.



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