Washington, D. C. 20549

                                    FORM 8-K

                                 CURRENT REPORT

                Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities
                              Exchange Act of 1934

          Date of Report (Date of earliest event reported): May 8, 2003
                                  (May 7, 2003)

             (Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

            Tennessee                  01-13031               62-1674303
     (State of Incorporation)    (Commission File No.)  (IRS Employer I.D. No.)

        111 Westwood Place, Suite 200
             Brentwood, Tennessee                         37027
     (Address of Principal Executive Office)            (Zip code)

       Registrant's telephone number, including area code: (615) 221-2250

Item 7. Financial Statements, Pro Forma Financial Information and Exhibits.

     The following exhibit is furnished pursuant to Items 9 and 12:

           99.1      Press Release dated May 7, 2003.

Item 9. Regulation FD Disclosure.

     The information contained in this Item 9 is being furnished pursuant to
Item 9 and Item 12, "Results of Operations and Financial Condition."

     On May 7, 2003, American Retirement Corporation issued a press release
announcing its first quarter 2003 earnings results. A copy of the press release
is furnished herewith as Exhibit 99.1.


     Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the
Registrant has duly caused this report to be signed on its behalf by the
undersigned hereunto duly authorized.

                                        AMERICAN RETIREMENT CORPORATION

Date: May 8, 2003                       By: /s/ George T. Hicks
                                           George T. Hicks
                                           Executive Vice President-Finance,
                                           Chief Financial Officer, Secretary
                                           and Treasurer

                                  EXHIBIT INDEX

          No.               Exhibit
          ---               -------

          99.1              Press Release dated May 7, 2003