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'Bye Bye Birdie' Actress Ann-Margret Opens up about Her Life after Husband Roger Smith's Death

Oyin Balogun
Jan 09, 2021
01:40 P.M.
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Actress Ann-Margret shared a romance and love story so magical with her late husband, actor Roger Smith. She recently opened up about her life following his sad passing in 2017.


Swedish-born actress and singer Ann-Margret famously dated the “King of Rock and Roll,” Elvis Presley. However, it is her five-decade love story with her late husband, actor Roger Smith, that transcended time and generations.

In a recent Closer Weekly issue, a close look was taken at the time-defying romance that the actress and actor shared while he was alive and even after he died.

Actress Ann-Margaret attends the 2016 USO Gala on October 20, 2016 at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington. | Photo: Getty Images


Narrating how she knew that Smith was her soulmate after their first date, Ann-Margret went on to talk about how he made her feel all those years ago. The 79-year-old once said that she knew that he would be able to protect her and that she would be able to depend on him.

She also opened up about her life and how she moved on while carrying him in her heart. Admitting the difficulty of moving on after losing a loved one, the actress explained:

“You’re not dead when you reach a certain age. You have to keep living and not sit at home and watch TV alone. You have to participate.”

Ann-Margret at the screening of "The The Cincinnati Kid" at the 2015 TCM Classic Film Festival | Photo: Getty Images


After Smith passed away, actor and director Alan Arkin approached Ann-Margret, asking her to join his series, “The Kominsky Method,” as a guest star. Arkin egged the older woman on, telling her that she needed to get back to work and live her life.

Not long after her highly-publicized flame with Presley, Ann-Margret found love again with Smith, and thus, their love story began.

Elvis Presley performing on the Elvis comeback TV special on June 27, 1968, in California. | Photo: Getty Images


Ann-Margret confessed to Arkin that she thought it time to return to work. She also made efforts to contact her longtime friends. Her pals include actor Morgan Freeman, actress Rita Moreno, and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

Throughout her long marriage with Smith, Ann-Margret never had children. However, she did not feel this void as Roger’s children, Tracey, Jordan, and Dallas, from his earlier marriage were there for her.

A source close to the actress also revealed that she lets herself be sad sometimes with Smith’s absence. Still, she dearly cherishes the years they had together and even believes he is still looking out for her.


Ann-Margret and husband Roger Smith at the 2010 Creative Arts Emmy Awards | Photo: Getty Images

Ann-Margret’s career got its exponential boost in the early ‘60s as a multi-talented singer and dancer. Around this time, she met Elvis Presley, and they fell into a passion and drama-filled romance.


At the time, Presley was also involved with his would-be wife, Priscilla Wagner. However, after about a year of their tumultuous relationship, Ann-Margret reportedly said that she and Presley knew things had to end when Presley eventually married Wagner in 1967.

Not long after her highly-publicized flame with Presley, Ann-Margret found love again with Smith, and thus, their love story began.

Priscilla and Elvis Presley at the Aladdin Hotel, Las Vegas on May 1, 1967. | Photo: Getty Images

They tied the knot in 1967. On June 4, 2017, Smith passed away at the age of 84. He might be long gone, but Ann-Margret still believes in the magic of their love and knows that he is watching over her.