Nancy Sinatra Remembers Elvis Presley: 'The Funniest Man and Probably the Most Serious Man I Knew'

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Nancy Sinatra is a celebrated singer best known for her 1966 smash "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'," but she's also a movie star.

Reflecting on her career and life for this week's issue of PEOPLE, the performer and oldest daughter of music and screen legend Frank Sinatra had especially fond memories of once working with her late friend Elvis Presley. 

They collaborated on Speedway, a 1968 American musical action film starring Presley as a racecar driver and Sinatra, now 81, as his romantic interest. Presley died at age 42 on Aug. 16, 1977.

RELATED: Nancy Sinatra Sr., Frank Sinatra's First Wife, Dies at 101

Looking at a photo of the pair together in the film, Sinatra says of Presley, "I know he was the funniest man and probably the most serious man I knew, both people in one. He made me laugh so hard. And at the same time, he would call me late at night to discuss things like the ghetto, and his concern for people in the ghetto."

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"I don't know if that's surprising," she adds. "People who follow his life probably are aware of his sensitivity."

Sinatra launched her performing career in 1960, making her debut in one of her father's TV specials. Her seminal anthem "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'" cemented her spot in pop-culture history.

"[My dad] was very supportive," she recalls to PEOPLE. "There was a time when he went onstage and he'd say, 'Hello, I'm Nancy's father,' because he was so proud of what was happening to me." 

Sinatra is now mother to two daughters — Amanda, 45, and A.J., 47 — with second husband Hugh Lambert (he died of cancer in 1985), and is a showbiz vet with 17 albums and several film credits to her name.

"I'm blessed to have been here this long," she says, reflecting on her charmed life and career. "If I can be of help to people, that would be wonderful. I guess experience counts for something."

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