Three decades after Dirty Dancing first hit screens, a sequel to the iconic film is coming – and the original film’s leading lady, Jennifer Grey, is going to both star in it and serve as an executive producer.
Lionsgate’s CEO, Jon Feltheimer, confirmed the news back in 2020, but now, further details have emerged, including when it’ll arrive in cinemas.
Taking the helm is Jonathan Levine, the director of 50/50 and Long Shot, who has also co-written the script with Elizabeth Chomko. “While the original Dirty Dancing has always been one of my favourite films, I never imagined I would direct the sequel,” the former said in a statement.
“Through co-writing it, I fell in love with the characters (new and old), the world of 1990s Catskills, New York, and the music, which will range from songs from the original movie to ’90s hip-hop. I can’t wait to collaborate with Jennifer to bring this beautiful story of summer and romance and dancing to a generation of new fans. And to the longtime ones, I promise we will not ruin your childhood. We will tackle the assignment with sophistication, ambition, and, above all, love.”
While Grey will reprise her role as the inimitable Frances Houseman, her beloved co-star Patrick Swayze, who died of pancreatic cancer in 2009 aged just 57, will sadly be unable to join her to recreate their now iconic final lift. However, Variety has reported that the “filmmakers are in conversations with Swayze’s estate to incorporate the actor’s presence in some way”, though what form this could take is anyone’s guess.
Additional cast members have yet to be announced but fans should expect more updates soon, seeing as the new film, also titled Dirty Dancing, is due to go into production later this year, with the studio eyeing a 2024 release. Until then, we’re crossing our fingers for a return to Kellerman’s and at least one reference to carrying a watermelon.