One of Elvis Presley’s post-army movies of the early 1960s was Follow That Dream. Anne Helm played The King’s love interest in the Hollywood movie, which also saw his cousin make his big-screen debut. Now Memphis Mafia member Billy Smith has shared how he doubled for Anne while wearing a hat, wig and balloon breasts for one of the scenes.
Billy made the reveal in the latest episode of the Memphis Mafia Kid YouTube channel and shared pictures at the end of the video below.
The King’s cousin said: “I hung out with [Elvis] ever since I was a little bitty boy.
“When I first started to work for him was 1961, August. It was on Follow That Dream…my first movie to actually be in.
“Boy, it was quite something to be able to live that experience at that time.”
On the Follow That Dream set, Billy said: “My Mom and Dad got to come down too and my brother, to watching the film of it all, that was another treat.”
And after being prompted by his son Danny in the video, he shared how he ended up doubling for Anne Helm.
The Memphis Mafia member said that Hollywood movies usually had to advertise for extras and doubles, but they didn’t want to slow production down.
So director Gordon Douglas pointed out Billy and told Elvis: “He’s about the right size and I think we can make him enough from behind to look like Anne that he can double for [her].”
Follow That Dream was originally set to be called Pioneer, Go Home!, as based on the 1959 novel of the same name by Richard P Powell.
However, producer Walter Mirisch retitled the movie after its song Follow That Dream.
The 1962 film’s synopsis reads: “Pop Kwimpel (Arthur O’Connell), son Toby (Elvis Presley) and their ragtag clan of adopted orphans wind up marooned on the side of the road in Florida, so they set up a makeshift home on the beach.
“Soon, uptight local bureaucrat H. Arthur King (Alan Hewitt) orders them off the land, but the state government doesn’t back him up. An enraged King then sets out to get his way, using manipulative social worker Alisha Claypoole (Joanna Moore) as part of his scheme to evict the Kwimpels.”