Jennifer Grey says making Dirty Dancing 2 without Patrick Swayze is ‘very tricky’

Jennifer Grey has given some insight into the production of Dirty Dancing 2 and the necessary alterations in place to account for Patrick Swayze’s absence.

Grey and Swayze played romantic leads Baby and Johnny in the original 1987 film, thrilling audiences with their chemistry on and off the dance floor.

Now, over three decades later, the hit movie is getting the direct sequel treatment after a prequel in 2006 and a TV movie remake in 2017.

However, Swayze’s death from pancreatic cancer in 2009 means that the sequel, starring Grey, will have to work around the character Johnny not being present.

In an interview with EW, the actor said of Dirty Dancing 2: “I can’t tell you much, sadly, but I will tell you that it will involve Baby. It will involve Kellerman’s. There will be music. Unless there’s a lot of CGI, Baby’s going to be a little older.”

Grey then went on to state that she was highly invested in the sequel’s success, but acknowledged that the original was something that can’t be recreated.

“I’m just so super committed and invested in making it a fresh [take],” she explained.

Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze in ‘Dirty Dancing' (Snap/Shutterstock)
Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze in ‘Dirty Dancing' (Snap/Shutterstock)

“What happened happened, and that will never happen again. There will never be another Johnny. There will never be another Patrick. This sequel has got to be its own standalone piece. It’s very tricky.”

However, Swayze’s widow, Lisa Niemi Swayze, recently stated that he wouldn’t have been interested in taking part in another version of the film if he was still alive.

She said: “[The way they] left it was absolutely perfect. There were several iterations of a script for that movie, but Patrick had a high standard and he wasn’t gonna do it just for the money.”

Dirty Dancing 2 is scheduled to debut in cinemas on 9 February 2024.