Grease the movie turned 35 just a few weeks ago. What a classic. From the over-the-top, tongue-in-cheek performances of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, to the incredible soundtrack, we'll never see another like it. The movie earned close to $400 million (sixty times its original budget of $6 million) and went on to be the 5th most profitable movie of all-time.
And while it might be some time before we see another movie with My Big Fat Greek Wedding numbers, one thing's for sure: we'll never again see a bunch of 30-year-old's cast as high school students.
Stockard Channing was 34 when she was cast as Rizzo, the rough and tough leader of the Pink Ladies. Her performance practically steals the movie. Yet she was old enough to play Rizzo's mother. Olivia Newton-John was about to turn 30 when she played Sandy. Still, could you picture anyone else in those roles? Or another actor in Travolta's spot? (If you say "Adrian Zmed," your laptop will explode in five seconds.)
Can you imagine the tweets and rants spewed into cyberspace if 39-year-olds Ben Affleck and Cameron Diaz were cast as Danny and Sandy? The studio would never survive it.
In today's world where almost everyone is famous, and your fame could be achieved simply by being the worst actor, you can't get away with anything longer than five minutes before someone leaks it and you're subsequently torn apart by thousands, or millions, of virtual, nit-picking vultures:
@TheSherryK - Are you KIDDING ME @PARAMOUNTPICS??? I'm a sophomore and Ben Affleck's old enough to be my dad!! #BieberforZuko!
@RealGreasefan - Cameron Diaz and her agent should both be shot for taking on this role!
@Therealcamerondiaz Would everyone please take it easy??!! It's only a movie!!!
@HuffPostNews - Affleck and Diaz pull out of @Paramountpics remake of "Grease" citing contractual differences.
Perhaps it was because we were kids when Grease was originally released back in '78 that we easily bought into the idea of actors our parents' age as high school students. Or perhaps all of us, including adults, were a bit more tolerant and accepting of things in general. Not to mention, probably a bit more naive as well -- which might not have been such a bad thing.
These days, there's so much useless information in front of our faces every second of every day, we're lucky our heads don't explode. Sometimes, they do.
Whatever the actors' ages in movies of today, given the current state of Hollywood, the one thing we probably wouldn't be surprised to see -- even before a remake of Grease -- is a remake of Grease 2. #killmenow
Follow David Fagin on Twitter: www.twitter.com/nikchapman