It was the last show of an eight-city tour and like the main character Johnny in the iconic movie Dirty Dancing, Jennifer Grey turned out to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the film with a bang. Known to millions as simply Baby, Grey most recently endeared herself to fans old and new on Dancing With the Stars where post thyroid cancer, and spinal injuries she was a warrior on the dance floor.
Prior to the final screening which included a VIP red carpet at the equally iconic Chinese Theatre, I had the opportunity to sit down with Jennifer in what turned out to be a delightful irreverent discussion about Fifty Shades of Grey, then and now.
Joshua Estrin: You are the face of one of the most beloved movies of all times and forever tied to a role that has defined you in an industry that seems to expect an artist to constantly recreate him/herself. Was your involvement in Dirty Dancing a blessing, a burden or a little of both?
Jennifer Grey: It was a blessing and one of the greatest gifts of my life. It brought me so much pleasure, and continues to do so. Equally important is the joy I see it offer others. It brings people back to simpler times and allows them to escape and lose themselves in a movie where they leave smiling and feeling like things will work out. I don't exactly know why it has that impact on people, but I am glad it does and glad I can play a part in that feeling 25 years later.
JE: What are some of your latest projects?
JG: I am opening a dance studio. It will be a place where people can come and explore everything from ballroom to cardio-funk. I want to introduce people to the world of dance as I was reintroduced to it 20 years later when I did Dancing With the Stars. I am also part of this crazy, wild and marginally insane girls night out in connection with Dirty Dancing and Skinny Cow. It is the most fun I can imagine. Skinny Cow approached me with a way to encourage women to grab their girlfriends and shake their sass.
JE: What do you think is the greatest misconception people have about you?
JG: I think people have this misconception that I am short [she laughs]. No really, I am quite statuesque I just don't think any of the photographs or video have captured the glamazon that I am -- strange, huh? [She added with more than a hint of sarcasm].
It is not every day that I get to meet one of my cinematic crushes. What made the meeting even sweeter was the fact that Grey, although all grown up, still has a knack for making people believe anything is possible and left me desperately wanting to be included in the festivities during this very special girls night out.
Disclaimer: In the spirit of full disclosure -- I received no payment and have no connection to the film's distributor or Skinny Cow brand.