‘We were both trying to assert ourselves’: Jennifer Grey says she and Patrick Swayze were like ‘oil and water’

Jennifer Gray has opened up about her on-set relationship with her late Dirty Dancing co-star Patrick Swayze.

Swayze starred in the 1987 romantic drama as a dance instructor at a holiday resort in 1963, while Grey plays a visitor who falls in love with him.

The actors had first met on the set of the 1984 action thriller Red Dawn.

In an interview with The Guardian, Grey said: “Patrick was a really good guy and really cared about me. He was always there for me and I would’ve done anything for him… but we were also a little oil and water.”

According to Grey, the “crackle” of their relationship ended up bolstering the characters’ relationship on screen.

“The difference was beautiful because it created a kind of static,” she said. “There’s a push and pull. We were both trying to assert ourselves.”

Swayze died of pancreatic cancer on 14 September 2009.

Elsewhere in the interview, Grey also describes shooting the famous scene in which Swayze lifts her up above his head in a dance pose.

“I’d never done it before that moment,” she said. “They had three cameras going and we only did it once. It was ridiculous because I couldn’t rehearse it. I couldn’t make myself do it and I hated myself for not trying it.

“There was something really emotional about it, too. You can see it on my face: I’m like: ‘Oh my God, I f***ing did it!’”