“Dirty Dancing”: 25 Years Of Awesome

    August 17, 2012
    Amanda Crum
    Comments are off for this post.

“Dirty Dancing” was a hit from the moment it lit up the screen, and 25 years later, fans are still singing the songs, quoting infamous lines, and falling in love all over again with Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey.

It had an unrivaled soundtrack which brought the music of the ’50s and ’60s to a whole new generation. It inspired pre-teen girls to copy Baby’s moves to “Wipeout” and practice “the lift” in the pool over the summer with their friends (just me?). It was a phenomenon, and it almost didn’t happen.

Although the movie likely would have been made either way, it almost had a very different cast. Patrick Swayze wrote in his memoir, The Time Of My Life, that he’d made a film called “Skatetown USA” in 1979 which drew a lot of comparisons to John Travolta’s role in “Saturday Night Fever”, and he was afraid if he accepted another role in a dance movie, he would be pigeonholed for the rest of his career. Luckily for us, he changed his mind, because the other candidates for Johnny Castle were Billy Zane and Val Kilmer. And Sarah Jessica Parker might have been Baby instead of Jennifer Grey.

Thanks to the onscreen chemistry of Swayze and Grey–who famously didn’t always get along–and the tireless energy of the many dancers who brought the film to life, the movie was a huge success and still has hardcore fans to this day. In fact, Conan O’Brien loves it so much, he started a campaign on his show to get the movie back into theaters. It ended up being a huge success, bringing in $500,000 for the studio after being released in just 54 theaters.

  • http://www.likedirtydancing.com Sue Tabashnik

    Happy 25th Anniversary to DD! Dirty Dancing will always be a classic thanks to Patrick and Jennifer, and the entire cast and crew! The right people came together at the right time with the right script, awesome music, and sizzling dancing!

  • http://www.vesta-tech.net Manila Website Designer

    I like this movie very much

  • Lisa

    That is just as old as I am.
    That came out the same year as I was born. Isn’t that amazing or what? :)

  • Beverly

    “Dirty Dancing” WAS the time of my life and every girl needs a bad boy (Johnny Castle) in her life.

  • http://musiccitytheatre.org Memphis Jackson

    Patrick Swayze – an incredible talent. And truly an inspiration and a class act. He will be missed. But we have this terrific screen legacy to enjoy. – Memphis Jackson

  • http://Yahoo Shirley

    Dirty Dancing is a movie that I believe is a classic. I especially liked the actor who portrayed Jennifer Gray’s (Baby) father. He did a great job as the doctor who helps the young people.

    I have a cassette tape someone gave me of the soundtrack. I play it often and I am not some young chick. I am a grandmother over 70 years old. I do hope the studio does not want to make a remake of this film. It would spoil the original and to me this film belongs to Patrick Swayze. May he rest in peace. Cancer is an awful disease and I am sure his wife feels the loss.

    • Jeff

      Dr. Houseman was portrayed by Jerry Orbach, who most of the younger set would remember from his role as Lennie Briscoe on Law and Order, but his roots go back to 1960 playing in Broadway musicals; he was a member of the original cast of The Fantastiks. And as it turns out, he also passed from cancer as did Patrick Swayze.

  • http://themojoman.com TheMojoMan

    I loved the movie,,but thought since they used Lake Lure in N.C. it should’ve been THE PLACE in the story line. Plus I thought all thru the movie,,why doesn’t Jennifer Grey get “that nose” fixed. She did and SHE’S BEAUTIFUL.

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