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Nicolas Cage and Lisa Marie Presley's surprise nuptials

Hawaiian love song

Cage, Presley
Cage and Presley wed on the grounds of the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows.  

(PEOPLE) -- Let ordinary fans flock to Memphis to honor the 25th anniversary of Elvis Presley's death. Nicolas Cage marked the occasion by marrying the King's only heir.

Nearly two years after Cage, 38, met Lisa Marie Presley, 34, at a party hosted by Ramones guitarist Johnny Ramone, the two were wed in a simple ceremony shortly before sunset on August 10 on the big island of Hawaii.

Surrounded by lava fields, warm breezes and 30 or so friends and family -- including Presley's mother, Priscilla, 57, and children, Danielle, 13, and Benjamin, 9 (from her six-year marriage to musician Danny Keough), and Cage's son Weston, 11 (with ex-gal pal actress Christina Fulton) -- Presley looked fittingly regal in an ivory taffeta gown (retail $4,400) she bought off the rack at the Beverly Hills Badgley Mischka store.

Says Priscilla: "It was a lovely wedding." Especially considering it was planned, says a source close to the couple, "in the last few weeks." The fact is, as recently as four months ago, Presley was not only not engaged to Cage, she was not seeing him at all.

Off and on

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In February the couple officially announced that their 10-month romance was over. By June they were back together, holding hands at the L.A. premiere of Cage's World War II drama "Windtalkers." Not that that presaged wedding bells. After all, Presley and Cage have a long history of sending encrypted romantic signals of their own.

Consider: Cage married actress Patricia Arquette after a two-week courtship in 1995 and secretly separated from her nine months later. Joint public appearances even after he filed for divorce in 2000 fueled speculation that they had reconciled. They had not.

Presley, meanwhile, married Michael Jackson in 1994 in the Dominican Republic in a quickie ceremony so out of the blue that even those closest to her insisted it could not be true. It was -- for a whole 20 months.

But that was then. "I'm very happy for them," says Cage's older brother, director Christopher Coppola, 40. "I wish them the best at this point in time."

Two nights after their nuptials, back in L.A. at a party thrown for Moby by Smirnoff Ice at the Standard Downtown L.A. hotel, they were, says a witness, "staring at each other and whispering all night." Next stop for him: the L.A. set of the upcoming drama "Matchstick Men;" she is headed to Memphis for her dad's anniversary.

"They are madly in love," says a friend, who nevertheless notes that the relationship is "complicated. Both have very big lives already. The challenge is to see if they can get them to mix.

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