'Grease' prequel movie 'Summer Loving' planned

Ben Arnold
Contributor
Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta in Grease (Credit: Paramount)

A prequel to classic movie musical Grease is in the works.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the working title for the movie is – as the song goes – Summer Loving.

It will explore the summer prior to Sandy Olsson turning up at Rydell High, after having met Danny Zuko at the beach and first sparking their romance.

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Famously, the song Summer Nights in the first movie tells the story of how John Travolta’s Danny and Olivia Newton-John’s Sandy met, with Danny using a little more artistic license than Sandy.

Penning the script will be John August, who has been behind Tim Burton movies Big Fish, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Corpse Bride and Frankenweenie.

Randal Kleiser directed the original movie back in 1978, adapted from the stage musical, which first arrived on Broadway in 1971.

It followed on from the notoriety Travolta had gained playing Tony Manero in Saturday Night Fever the year before, and made a worldwide star of Olivia Newton-John.

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It made nearly $400 million at the worldwide box office (over $1.5 billion adjusted for inflation), on a tiny $6 million budget.

A sequel, Grease 2, arrived in 1982, starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Maxwell Caulfield, and with reprised appearances from Didi Conn as Frenchy and Sid Caesar as Coach Calhoun.

Though it was a box office disaster, and mauled by critics, it’s since become something of a cult classic.