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poster. The poster issue was reportedly due to a Pepsi deal the producers had struck, although dancer Sean Moran has a slightly different take (or possibly a mere enhancement) on that in his book, The Diary of a Movie Greaser. John Travolta has said that he feels he was the only one who really had any real faith in the film. But he is also shocked that after 40 years, people are still talking about Grease. John can't believe the attachment that fans still have to it. They want to dress like the characters, they still sing the songs, etc. John is very humbled by the affection still shown for this fabulous musical after four decades. John also says that he was the only real choice to play Danny Zuko. No auditions were held to cast his part. For the past 40 years, rumors circulated that Henry Winkler – who played biker Arthur Fonzarelli on Happy Days – had been considered to play Danny, but Henry didn't want to be typecast as a greaser. That rumor is partially true, and John Travolta recently set the record straight. He explained that he loved the idea of Henry Winkler in the role of Kenickie, so he had suggested him to producers Robert Stigwood and Allan Carr. John was very happy with Jeff Conaway playing Kenickie though, since the two of them were already friends since the time they had both lived in New York. John had some influence while making Grease, on matters that many actors never get a say in. These included casting decisions, and there was nobody that John felt would be more perfect to play Sandy, than Olivia Newton-John. So John went to her house to convince the apprehensive Aussie to do the film, after producer Allan Carr had already approached her about it during a dinner at friend and fellow Australian Helen Reddy's house. While producers are normally the ones who request a screen test to see if actors will have the right chemistry, Olivia was the one who wanted to do a screen test of herself with John Travolta, to make sure that she really could act. Her hesitation was due to her appearance in a failed Australian scifi musical movie called Tomorrow. Director Randal Kleiser has recalled that while Olivia absolutely relished in playing “bad” Sandy at the end of the movie, she absolutely hated having to smoke. Randal also remembers that her cigarette had to be prepped with a bobby pin, so that it would drop at the right spot and not be caught up in the breeze. Barry Pearl, who played T-Bird Doody in Grease, has fielded questions from many fans asking if anybody knew how successful the film would become. “Nobody knew,” Barry says. “Anybody who says they knew... I'd like to see their crystal ball.” He also adds, “What we did know, is that we were having a lot of fun.” On the subject of the T-Birds originally being called the Burger Palace Boys in the stage production, Barry once joked, “They could have been called The Frosty Palace Boys, but that sound a little froo-froo for tough guys of the '50s.” Eddie Deezen, who played Eugene, loves to tell the religious story of how he landed his iconic role in Grease. He was very excited to be cast. But after a rewrite of the script, the Eugene character had been completely omitted, and Eddie was devastated. Eddie is Jewish, but after he explained his disappointment to a Catholic friend of his, his friend went to church and lit a candle to pray for him. Shortly thereafter, Eddie received a call that Eugene had been written back in, and the part was still his. Eddie fondly remembers his entire experience while filming Grease. One fellow actor in

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Steel Notes Magazine-Winter 2018  

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Steel Notes Magazine-Winter 2018  

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