'Dirty Dancing' Then & Now: '80s classic revived as TV musical

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In the new ABC TV musical, Colt Prattes and Abigail Breslin step into Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey's dancing shoes in "Dirty Dancing."

The wait is finally over.

ABC's musical re-telling of "Dirty Dancing" premieres tonight at 7 p.m. on ABC13, and it has us feeling super nostalgic.

Today we're looking back at the movie that started it all: the 1987 coming-of-age story about dance, loving and becoming the person you were destined to be.

PHOTOS: A 'Dirty Dancing' Who's Who, from 1987 to 2017


We're also peering to the future, and what generations of new fans can look forward to discovering tonight.

SNEAK PEEK: Watch the 'Dirty Dancing' TV movie trailer

Here's 35 facts you may not have known about "Dirty Dancing":

Jennifer Grey almost wasn't Baby
The actress who would dance into our hearts as Frances "Baby" Houseman so disliked Patrick Swayze while filming the 1984 film "Red Dawn," she had to be convinced to do the project by Swayze, according to IMDB.

The famous lift is something of a miracle
While filming "Dancing with the Stars" in 2010, Jennifer Grey shocked the world with this revelation about one of the greatest scenes of the entire movie: the "lift" scene with Patrick Swayze was shot in one day, without any rehearsals. Wow.

"Havana Nights" could have been the third "Dirty Dancing" film
But, Patrick Swayze was leery of doing a sequel, and turned down $6 million to play Johnny again.

The movie has one of cinema's most quotable lines
"Nobody puts Baby in the corner," was voted as #98 in the Top 100 movie quotes by American Film Institute.

The very small world of dance
Twelve years before filming "Dirty Dancing," Jennifer Grey's dad, Broadway star Joel Grey, starred in "Goodtime Charley" alongside ensemble dancer Patrick Swayze, according to Playbill.

"Dirty" money
One of the reasons the 1987 version of "Dirty Dancing" did so well at the box office was its power to bring back audiences to see it a second time.

The movie was made for $6 million, and the film broke the $10 million mark in its first 10 days in American theaters. Seven months later, the movie raked in $63 million in the U.S. Including worldwide box office sales, the film made $170 million in 1987.

You can actually stay at Kellerman's Hotel
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"Dirty Dancing" lodge offers three "Dirty Dancing"-themed weekends


The ultimate "Dirty Dancing" fan experience can be found in Mountain Lake in Virginia, where guests can stay at the same lodge that Baby and Johnny Castle fell in love.

"Dirty Dancing" has been duplicated many times
ABC's TV musical re-telling is only the latest alternate version of "Dirty Dancing." Here's what you might have missed over the last 30 years:
  • 1988: Bill Medley and Eric Carmen performed in "Dirty Dancing: Live in Concert" in 90 cities over three months.
  • 1988: CBS launched a "Dirty Dancing" TV series. Producers shot 11 episodes, but it was cancelled abruptly after only a few episodes.
  • 2004: "Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story on Stage" was adapted for the live theater in Australia, and reached financial success even as reviews were mixed. The production has seen similar success in the United States since.
  • 2004: The movie "Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights" hit theaters. The film cost $25 million to make. Mired with terrible reviews, producers saw $27.7 million in box office sales.
  • 2007: "Dirty Dancing: The Video Game" was released for the 20th anniversary of the movie.
  • 2007: In the UK, a reality show based on the film, "Dirty Dancing: The Time of Your Life," was filmed.
  • 2014: The official American tour of the "Dirty Dancing" theatrical production began in September, with dates in 31 cities.
  • May 24, 2017: ABC debuts its "Dirty Dancing" TV musical.


Swayze didn't get his star until 1997
Patrick Swayze received his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame 10 years after "Dirty Dancing" was released. The film made its way back into theaters in 1997.

"The Time of My Life" was a real winner
"Dirty Dancing" is an Academy Award and Golden Globe winner for 1988 Best Original Song, "(I've Had) The Time of My Life," performed by Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes. It also won a Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance by a Duo for the same song.

Home audiences also sent the movie soaring
"Dirty Dancing" was a video store owner's dream, earning the title of number one video rental of 1988. It also became the first film to sell a million copies. More than 10 million copies have been sold on DVD.

The "Dirty Dancing"/Disney-ABC connection
The people who have made "Dirty Dancing" possible over the years have also played many roles on other Disney and ABC productions.
  • Abigail Breslin (Baby Houseman) voiced the character Rosebud on Disney's "Air Buddies" (2006) and also appears in "The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause."
  • Jennifer Grey (Baby Houseman) has not only danced on "Dancing with the Stars" (2010), but also voiced the character Louisa Patel on Disney Channel's "Phineas and Ferb."
  • Bruce Greenwood (Jake Houseman) played the president in Disney's "National Treasure: Book of Secrets" (2007).
  • Sarah Hyland (Lisa Houseman) is a star on ABC's hit comedy "Modern Family."
  • Jerry Orbach (Jake Houseman) went on to voice Lumiere in Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" (1991).
  • Kenny Ortega, who choreographed the original "Dirty Dancing," directed Disney's "Newsies" (1992) and Disney Channel's "High School Musical" movies.
  • Debra Messing (Marjorie Houseman) played reoccurring character Dana Abandando on ABC's "NYPD Blue."
  • Katey Sagal (Vivian Pressman) portrayed Cate Hennessy on ABC's "8 Simple Rules" from 2002-2005.
  • Nicole Scherzinger (Penny Rivera) voiced the role of Sina in Disney's "Moana," and has also appeared on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars" and Disney Channel's "Wizards of Waverly Place."


Dirty Dancing" premieres tonight at 7 p.m. on ABC13.

The Walt Disney Company is the parent company of this ABC station.

Report a typo to the ABC13 staff


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