11 Incredible Things You Didn’t Know About ‘Dirty Dancing’

A very good morning to you all on this most auspicious of days. Today is the 30th anniversary of one of the greatest cinematic masterpieces of the last century: Dirty Dancing.

30 years since Baby first stumbled into that dance party carrying a watermelon, 30 years since onesies and denim cut offs became our official summer uniform, and 30 years since we all collectively developed a crush on a tight tee-shirt-wearing Patrick Swayze.

But we all know that. What don’t we know about the movie that introduced us to the Mamba and had us dreaming of summer romances in the Catskills?

11. Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey weren’t the first choices for the main roles

These are the only stars of 'Dirty Dancing' in our minds. Photo: 'Dirty Dancing'
These are the only stars of ‘Dirty Dancing’ in our minds. Photo: ‘Dirty Dancing’

Just imagine Dirty Dancing without these two in the lead role. (You don’t have to, that already happened with the live-action reboot earlier this year starring Abigail Breslin and the implausibly-named Colt Prattes). Inconceivable!

Except… Neither Patrick Swayze nor Jennifer Grey were the film studio’s first choice for the part. In fact, Val Kilmer was offered the role of Johnny Castle and turned it down, while Sarah Jessica Parker and Sharon Stone both auditioned to play wallflower Baby. Billy Zane, who event went as far as being confirmed as Johnny, was booted from the film when he proved to have zero chemistry with Jennifer Grey.