Jennifer Grey explains Why Patrick Swayze’s Death Makes Dirty Dancing The New Dirty Dancing ‘Very Tricky’

Jennifer Grey explains Why Patrick Swayze's Death Makes Dirty Dancing The New Dirty Dancing ‘Very Tricky’

These are the following Dirty Dancing getting a prequel in the form of 2006’s Havana Nights Dirty Dancing, as well as being remade in 2017 as a critically-underwhelming ABC TV movie, the 1987 original is getting a direct sequel all these years later. Soon thereafter, rumors circulated about another. Dirty Dancing movie started circulating, Dirty Dancing 2Although he died in 2009, the official confirmation was made in 2020. Jennifer Grey won’t be there with Patrick Swayze. Grey addresses why Swayze’s passing makes it more difficult to tackle the new. Dirty DancingMovie “very tricky.”

As she spoke about her experience, Dirty DancingWith EW to commemorate the movie’s 35th anniversary, Jennifer Grey briefly chatted with EW about Dirty Dancing 2. Along with confirming the upcoming movie’s script is being worked on and that shooting will kick off in spring 2023, Grey addressed how the sequel will feel both familiar, but also need to stand on its own, which is especially key because Patrick Swayze is no longer with us. Grey explained:

 I can’t tell you much, sadly, but I will tell you that it will involve Baby. It will involve Kellerman’s. There will also be music. Unless there’s a lot of CGI, Baby’s going to be a little older. [Laughs] It’s going to be Kellerman’s, music, dancing, love story, romance. I’m just so super committed and invested in making it a fresh [take]. This is what happened. It will never happen again. Johnny will be the last. There will not be another Patrick. This sequel must be its own piece. It’s very tricky.

The original Dirty Dancing followed the story of Jennifer Grey’s Frances “Baby” Houseman, a young woman who goes vacationing with her family at Ketterman’s in the summer of 1963 and meets Patrick Swayze’s Johnny Castle, a dance instructor at the resort. Baby takes over as Johnny’s dance partner for a performance, and as they practice their choreography, the two fall in love. Warning: Spoiler alert for a 35-year-old movie, but the story concludes with Baby and Johnny nailing their climactic lift (which Grey refused to until the day that scene was shot) in the performance and then dancing with everyone else at Kellerman’s while “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life” played.

If Patrick Swayze was still alive, I can only imagine. Dirty Dancing 2 would have either shown us that either Baby and Johnny were still together all these decades later, or the story would have depicted these two reuniting after their original relationship didn’t work out. Unfortunately, we won’t be seeing Swayze and Grey together again, and Johnny Castle understandably won’t be recast for Dirty Dancing 2. Grey and other movie-makers are trying to find the right balance between respecting the past and making the new film stand on its merits. Let’s hope they reach their goal.

Jennifer Grey did not provide any other details than those mentioned above. Dirty Dancing 2’s plot is shrouded in secrecy, but behind the scenes, Long Shot’s Jonathan Levine is directing the feature. The sequel is set to come out on February 9, 2024, but if you’re curious about what movies will be arriving sooner than that, take a look at the slated 2023 movie releases.

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