What You Don't Know About Lisa Marie Presley's Daughter, Riley Keough

You might not know the name Riley Keough offhand, but take one look at the up-and-coming actor and it'll be immediately clear from where, or rather whom, she came. Keough is the daughter of Lisa Marie Presley, making her the granddaughter of the legendary Elvis Presley, and she bears a striking resemblance to both parties thanks to her angular, eye-catching features. Although she's rock royalty and counted none other than Michael Jackson as her stepfather, Keough is adamant about making a name for herself in her own right (via The Guardian).

Her impressive IMDb slate lays out the kind of complex roles she's predominantly attracted to, from her debut as Marie Currie, sister to Dakota Fanning's Cherie Currie, in the female-directed rock biopic "The Runaways," to Capable, one of the so-called wives of villain Immortan Joe, in "Mad Max: Fury Road," and the dastardly, Confederate flag bikini-sporting Krystal in "American Honey." Her name might conjure up memories of other famous people, but Keough is a star all by herself. 

Riley Keough grew up between two different worlds

The prolific performer who, as The Guardian notes, grew up between Michael Jackson's infamous Neverland Ranch, her grandfather's legendary Graceland Estate, and her father's trailer park, is a self-confessed workaholic, eager to prove herself beyond the bounds of her famous family. Although Riley Keough is obviously unashamed of being Elvis Presley's granddaughter, the "Logan Lucky" star is quick to note her early life was more complex.

"I grew up very privileged with my mother. But my dad didn't live like that. And I think experiencing both sides has been helpful. My father had mattresses on the floor of his apartments. He lived in cabins and trailer parks. He just didn't have much money," she recalled. However, Keough actually preferred her father's "colorful," "eccentric," and "fun" life, reportedly telling him at the age of 8, "I want to grow up and be poor like you!" without realizing the implications. 

The prolific actor has been performing her whole life

Many of Riley Keough's characters, from Krystal to Christine in Steven Soderbergh's TV series "The Girlfriend Experience," could reasonably be described as hustlers. Choosing them is no coincidence because, as the actor informed Elle, she's a hustler herself at heart. Keough divulged she's been acting since she was born, describing it as, "Just pretending my way through life." 

Her onscreen appeal is inherent to who she really is, however. As a regular collaborator, Soderbergh explained, "Whatever molecules shift when she's around are generated by Riley, and not because of any entertainment industry baggage."  Keough shows signs of moving behind the camera herself, having directed multiple music videos for rapper Boogie, hinting at her multi-talented nature and desire to do everything she can to make a name for herself in the industry. 

In fact, her only hardship would be "playing a weak character." As Keough explained, "It's fun to play someone manipulative. Not everybody is so simple." 

Riley Keough explored a new path to process tragedy

Following the devastating loss of her brother, Benjamin Keough, Riley Keough took courses to become a death doula. After completing her training, the actor shared on Instagram: "I just felt like writing such a deep thank you to this community who are teaching and training people in conscious dying and death work." Keough acknowledged that death can be an uncomfortable topic, but it's crucial to be open about it, especially as a form of preparation. 

Keough noted, "We prepare ourselves so rigorously for the entrance and have no preparation for our exit. So I'm so grateful for this community and to be able to contribute what I can." In a chat with The New York Times, the "Zola" star acknowledged that the experience of losing her brother led to "a year of feeling like I was thrown into the ocean and couldn't swim."

In fact, she couldn't speak for weeks or leave her bed for months. Part of the struggle came from not knowing what to do with herself. As Keough explained, "If I'm going through a breakup, I know what to do with that and where to file it in my mind, but the suicide of your brother? Where do you put that? How does that integrate? It just doesn't." Becoming a death doula helped the actor work through those feelings by helping others going through similar issues.

If you or anyone you know is having suicidal thoughts, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline​ by dialing 988 or by calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255)​. 

Her mother was a lifelong inspiration to the actor

Sadly, Riley Keough's skills as a death doula came in handy again following the heartbreaking death of her mother, Lisa Marie Presley, in January 2023. The legendary singer was pronounced dead after going into cardiac arrest and being rushed to the hospital, per TMZ, with Lisa Marie's family confirming the sad news in a statement soon after. "It is with a heavy heart that I must share the devastating news that my beautiful daughter Lisa Marie has left us," her mother, Priscilla Presley, announced (via People).

The mourning matriarch continued, "She was the most passionate strong, and loving woman I have ever known. We ask for privacy as we try to deal with this profound loss. Thank you for the love and prayers. At this time there will be no further comment." Keough was incredibly close to her mother, even revealing that Lisa Marie helped her get into character for the miniseries "Daisy Jones & The Six."

As the actor told People, "My mother is certainly an inspiration to me," describing Elvis Presley's only daughter as "a very strong, smart woman." Keough went on to assert how her mother's attitude to life, and in particular not giving credence to anybody else's opinions, really helped her too, noting she was "always interested in women who weren't behaving 'the right way.'" As the actor put it simply, "I think just women who were liberated were inspiring to me."