Orion Eckley Darnell

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Fictionalized version of Elvis Presley from the 1978 novel, Orion by Gail Brewer-Giorgio. Orion fakes his own death to escape the burden of fame. Brewer-Giorgio midwifed the "Elvis is still alive" cottage industry, publishing several "nonfiction" works on the topic. She claims she wrote the novel before Elvis' August 16, 1977 death but there appears to be no evidence to support that.

Muddying the waters, an Elvis impersonator began performing and recording under the name "Orion" and wearing a mask in public, deliberately inviting the assumption that he WAS Elvis. Jimmy Ellis was convinced to play the role by Sun Records owner Shelby Singleton who concocted the Elvis cash-in and shamelessly swiped from the novel for backstory.

The whole affair is outlined in the 2015 documentary, Orion: The Man Who Would Be King.

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