The movie that swept women around the world off their feet while causing husbands around the world to sweat every time they saw their dancing partners getting ready for a run-up across the floor is making a comeback. Yes, Dirty Dancing is getting a sequel over three decades later because you can’t keep Baby in a corner! Back in 1987, the small budget film directed by Emilie Ardolino became a smash hit as audiences fell in love with the story of Jennifer Grey’s naïve and well-to-do Frances “Baby” Houseman who falls for Patrick Swayze’s lower-class dance instructor, Johnny Castle, during a summer holiday at a resort much to the dismay of her high society family.
It was the kind of success (grossing over $200 million off just a $5 million budget) that is normally primed for a sequel, but the movie surprisingly never ever got one. There was a remake back in 2004 with Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights which transplanted the original plot into the backdrop of the Cuban Revolution, but it couldn’t quite dance its way to success. And now after a stage play (Editor’s Note: which I saw and was actually damn good – Kervyn) and a failed TV series, it seems they are finally ready to make a true follow-up to the original film.
There were early reports last month that Grey was involved in a new dance movie and fans had hoped it was a Dirty Dancing sequel. This was confirmed by Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer during an investors call (via JoBlo) yesterday where it was announced that along with reprising her starring role as Baby, Grey will also be producing. 50/50 and Warm Bodies filmmaker Jonathan Levine will be directing off a screenplay written by the duo of Mikki Daughtry and Tobias Iaconis (Five Feet Apart, The Curse of La LLorona). And based on Feltheimer’s statements, it doesn’t look like the creative team will be deviating much from the previous winning formula:
It will be exactly the kind of romantic, nostalgic movie that the franchise’s fans have been waiting for and that have made it the biggest-selling library title in the Company’s history,
Sadly, one part of that first movie which will be missing is that of Swayze who tragically passed away from cancer back in 2009. It’s not clear exactly how the story will continue without the actor’s remarkable screen presence, but no doubt he will feature in some form of nostalgic flashbacks as the movie possibly deals with the future he may have had with Grey’s character.
It will be interesting to see exactly where this sequel takes the story and how it plans to follow up with bold ambitions for a big love story, that will feature bold dances moves. Not to mention finding a hit as big as the original’s Oscar-winning The Time of My Life. It’s a sequel that certainly has big shoes to fill.
Last Updated: August 7, 2020