Grease fans, get chills and be ablast: One of the most famous screen romances of all time is being revisited – and you may finally find out if Danny got very far with Sandy.
Paramount Studios is developing Summer Loving, a prequel to John Travolta and Olivia Newton John’s 1978 behemoth Grease, according to an exclusive in The Hollywood Reporter.
For now, it’s not known who will star or direct and whether the film will be a musical.
Big Fish and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory writer John August is confirmed to pen the script, CNN reported.
Temple Hill (First Man, the Maze Runner movies) is producing with Picturestart, according to THR.
If it comes off, the prequel will take audiences back to the summer of 1959, before Danny Zuko and Sandy Olsson were young star-crossed lovers at Rydell High.
She was a squeaky-clean good girl from Australia with a penchant for twin sets and poodle skirts. Just turned 18, he was a rough-diamond greaser with a leather-jacketed posse.
Their opposite worlds collided at Rydell, with their unlikely romance and how they came together “like rama lama lama ka dinga da dinga dong” the bedrock of Grease.
Until 2008, when it was eclipsed by Mamma Mia!, Grease was the highest-grossing musical of all time, taking in nearly $560 million globally on its shoestring budget of $8.4 million.
The movie is still re-released every couple of years in anniversary editions. Last year, Travolta and Newton John hand jived at a Hollywood party for Grease’s 40th birthday.
A 1982 sequel starring Michelle Pfeiffer bombed but a 2016 live TV version with Julianne Hough and Vanessa Hudgens won five Emmys.
Still celebrated as a pop culture phenomenon, Grease’s soundtrack has sold more than 28 million copies.
Among its ear worm songs? Summer Nights, the he-said, she-said account of the holiday romance, which the new prequel will reportedly be based on.
As even casual fans know, in the early part of Grease Danny and Sandy both tell their friends versions of the summer fling they had via Summer Nights.
Danny’s tale is more racy and physical – they got friendly down in the sand, and she “was good, you know what I mean” – but Sandy’s G-rated side is about their emotional connection: They went strolling, drank lemonade and stayed out until 10 o’clock.
Soon, they were hopelessly devoted to each other but nights turned colder and that’s where it ended.
Until now. Summer Loving will bring to Technicolor life Danny and Sandy’s back story and fateful meeting at the beach, when he ran past her and splashed her, then saved her life when she nearly drowned.
Social media reaction to the news was mixed, with some fans tweeting congratulations to August (“I can’t wait for this”) and others more subdued or cynical: “Yeah … but no.”
Said one Twitter user, “Well, the song did say tell me more.”
Can someone be intrigued, excited and skeptical all at the same time? I hope it's done right. 😎 pic.twitter.com/1Tsf3kehDe
— Kevin Turner (@GroovyKevMan) April 9, 2019
Noted Vanity Fair, “Given how hard it generally is to recapture lightning in a bottle, it is safe to say that the film’s cast and crew will face a tough road ahead.
“Unless they have a flying car.”