No one stands alone in the Presley family.Days after Riley Keough was formally appointed as the sole heir to mom Lisa Marie Presley’s estate, according to multiple reports, she gave insight into what life has been like in the months since the singer’s January death. And this includes sharing the current state of her relationship with grandmother Priscilla Presley.
“When my mom passed, there was a lot of chaos in every aspect of our lives,” Riley told Vanity Fair in an interview published Aug. 8. “Everything felt like the carpet had been ripped out and the floor had melted from under us. Everyone was in a bit of a panic to understand how we move forward, and it just took a minute to understand the details of the situation, because it’s complicated.”
As the Daisy Jones & the Six star noted, “We are a family, but there’s also a huge business side of our family. So I think that there was clarity that needed to be had.” The legal sign-off ended a dispute between Riley and Priscilla over Lisa Marie’s will—including Graceland, the estate Elvis Presley’s only child inherited after his 1977 passing. As far as her
relationship with Priscilla goes, Riley shared that “things with Grandma will be happy,” explaining that “they’ve never not been happy.”
“There was a bit of upheaval, but now everything’s going to be how it was,” Riley continued. “She’s a beautiful woman, and she was a huge part of creating my grandfather’s legacy and Graceland. It’s very important to her. He was the love of her life. Anything that would suggest otherwise in the press makes me sad because, at the end of the day, all she wants is to love and protect Graceland and the Presley family and the legacy.”
In fact, according to Riley, safeguarding that legacy is her grandmother’s “whole life.””It’s a big responsibility she has tried to take on,” the Terminal List actress added. “None of that stuff has really ever been a part of our relationship prior. She’s just been my grandma.” Riley went on to deny any reports suggesting that Priscilla’s final resting place would not be at her ex’s famed estate, whom she was married to for six years until their divorce in 1973.
“I don’t know why she wouldn’t be buried at Graceland,” she noted. “Sharing Graceland with the world was her idea from the start. I always had positive and beautiful memories and association with Graceland. Now, a lot of my family’s buried there, so it’s a place of great sadness at this point in my life.” In addition to her grandfather and mother, Riley’s brother Benjamin, who died in July 2020, was also laid to rest at the Memphis property following his passing. And though Riley shared she feels like “her heart has exploded” given the tragic circumstances, she also has another perspective on life.
“When I lost my brother, there was no road map whatsoever, and it was a lot of big emotions that I didn’t know what to do with,” she told Vanity Fair. “When I lost my mom, I was familiar with the process a little bit more, and I found working to be really helpful.” And that focus on her professional life proved to be a crucial part of her healing process.
“I find it triggering when people say happiness is a choice,” she added, “but in that moment, I did feel like there was a choice in front of me to give up and let this event take me out or have the courage to work through it. I started trying to move through it and not let it take me out.”