'Dirty Dancing' sequel eyes for 2024 release, Jonathan Levine to direct

 

by IANS | Tue, May 10, 2022, 12:40 PM

Los Angeles, May 10 (IANS) 'Long Shot' and 'Warm Bodies' director Jonathan Levine has been set to direct the buzzed-about sequel to beloved 1987 movie 'Dirty Dancing', which Lionsgate is launching for next week's Cannes market.

In an exclusive interview with 'Deadline', Levine discussed the hot market package and revealed details about the film's creative direction.

In the sequel, Jennifer Grey will reprise her iconic role of Frances 'Baby' Houseman as she returns to Kellerman's in the 1990s. Like the original, the sequel will be a coming-of-age romance centred on the experience of a young woman at the summer camp, but Baby's own journey will intertwine with this to create a multi-layered narrative, reports 'Deadline'.

Levine has co-written the sequel, also titled 'Dirty Dancing', with Elizabeth Chomko. Casting conversations are underway. The team has a shortlist of names to play the lead and the film is expected to go into production later this year for release in 2024.

The cast is expected to be a combination of newcomers and name actors.

Grey might not be the only face from the original to return, Levine told us.

"We are about to talk to people and are exploring that," the 50/50 director said.

"The most important thing for us was having Jennifer on board," he added.

"She is an invaluable collaborator. We're going to try to involve as many people from the original as is appropriate. We want to be respectful in every way."

That involves having a conversation with Patrick Swayze's estate, Levine said. "Johnny is a part of Baby's journey in the story."

He told us: "This film exists in a dialogue with the original. We want to introduce this story to a whole new generation. That said, Johnny's absence looms large over the story, so it's a coming-of-age story but also a coming-of-age for Baby's character in a way."

The movie's music will range from songs from the original movie - 'Hungry Eyes' is among the songs set to return - to 1990s hip-hop. Levine also name-checked Alanis Morissette and Liz Phair as artists whose songs potentially could feature.

Levine was previously set to produce the project through his Megamix banner alongside his producing partner Gillian Bohrer, but the filmmaker now has chosen to direct the film as well. Grey will also executive-produce the sequel.

"While the original Dirty Dancing has always been one of my favourite films, I never imagined I would direct the sequel," said Levine.

"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 a90s 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."

'Dirty Dancing' is the best-selling library title in Lionsgate's history. The 1987 original starring Grey and Swayze was a global box-office smash and has amassed an ardent fanbase the world over.

Latest Cinema Updates
Aerial show by fighter jets unfolds 'Top Gun: Maverick' premiere Thu, May 19, 2022, 11:47 AM
Adivi Sesh: I can't be Major Sandeep, but I can be his parents' second son Thu, May 19, 2022, 11:46 AM
'Dhaakad' title song released in Varanasi, played on floating LED screen Thu, May 19, 2022, 11:45 AM
Rajesh Khanna, Big B's iconic film 'Anand' set for a remake Thu, May 19, 2022, 11:43 AM
Cruise never toyed with OTT despite two-year delay in 'Top Gun: Maverick' release Thu, May 19, 2022, 11:41 AM
Adivi Sesh all set to deliver a third 'HIT' Thu, May 19, 2022, 11:36 AM
Mahesh Babu's 'Sarkaru Vaari Paata' makes fastest Rs 100 crore for a Telugu-only film Thu, May 19, 2022, 11:34 AM
Nothing more beautiful than a film that connects people: Fatima Sana Shaikh on 'Modern Love: Mumbai' Thu, May 19, 2022, 11:33 AM
Kannada actress Samyukta Hegde's bikini poses go viral Thu, May 19, 2022, 11:31 AM
Divya Agarwal on teaming up with singer Rico for her latest track 'Nai Nai Nai' Wed, May 18, 2022, 01:09 PM
Nawazuddin Siddiqui to star in US Indie film 'Laxman Lopez' Wed, May 18, 2022, 01:08 PM
Alexander Rodnyansky working on 'House of Cards'-style series on Putin's Kremlin Wed, May 18, 2022, 01:07 PM
Sumedh Mudgalkar shares his experience of working in 'Escaype Live' Wed, May 18, 2022, 12:38 PM
Amber Heard on Johnny Depp: This is the man who tried to kill me Wed, May 18, 2022, 12:37 PM
Urvashi Rautela turns Snow White as she makes Cannes debut Wed, May 18, 2022, 12:34 PM
Kamal Haasan is all smiles in Cannes picture with AR Rahman Wed, May 18, 2022, 12:33 PM
'Man in Black': Madhavan looks sharp in classic black suit on Cannes red carpet Wed, May 18, 2022, 12:31 PM
Cannes red carpet stars: Eva Langoria, Lashana Lynch, Julianne Moore Wed, May 18, 2022, 12:26 PM
Deepika walks Cannes red carpet in Sabyasachi sari inspired by Royal Bengal tiger Wed, May 18, 2022, 12:24 PM
Deepika attends jury duty on Cannes opening day in Sabyasachi ensemble Wed, May 18, 2022, 12:23 PM