The world is going back to Rydell High. Paramount+ has just picked up a ten-episode prequel series for Grease, the musical starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John. The prequel will take place four years before Sandra Dee and Danny start singing about those summer nights. Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies is going to tell the origin story of the group of outcast girls and how those pink jackets came to be. The girls in the group will be all-new characters, so don’t expect to see Rizzo, Frenchy, Jan, or Marty here. This series will focus on four outcasts who started the group before the characters we’ve seen took over the group. We can expect their pink lady ways to shake the moral code of the Rydell High community. Previously, HBO Max had this project, but it has since moved to Paramount+.
While the love story of Danny and Sandy may have taken center stage in the first Grease movie, it’s the pink ladies that many will always remember. In the 1978 live-action musical, Olivia Newton-John played Sandra Dee, a good girl who falls in love with John Travolta’s Danny over the summer. When she starts at a new school, she unexpectedly meets him there, only to discover he’s not the sweet gentleman she remembers, but a greaser. A bad boy who likes cars and hair product more than the average fellow. They sing a lot about their star-crossed lovers situation while Sandy works her way into the pink ladies, a group of outcast girls headed by Rizzo, a fan-favorite who isn’t all that taken with Sandra Dee and her good-girl ways.
Grease came out early in John Travolta’s career. His role as Danny was introduced to audiences in 1978. The year before, audiences got to see him star as Tony Manero in Saturday Night Fever. Before that, he had a small role in Carrie and parts in small projects, including an ongoing role on a television series called Welcome Back, Kotter, but it wasn’t until he was dancing on screen that audiences really knew the name. Since the 1970s, his career has been more varied, but it’s of note that one of his most well-known films is Pulp Fiction, and while a lot of gritty things happened in that Quentin Tarantino film, his dance scene with Uma Thurman is still one of the most memorable parts.
While John Travolta’s romance was the center of the first Grease film, he didn’t appear in the sequel. Michelle Pfeiffer starred in Grease 2, where she played a pink lady. This time around, a good boy falls for a bad girl and has to buy a motorcycle to prove to her that he can be a cool rider. The movie was not a fan favorite, and while it had the same basic love story idea at the center, the pink ladies were one of the main things that still made it a Grease story.
As far as we know, John Travolta won’t be hanging out with the pink ladies. Since it’s a prequel, it wouldn’t make sense for the actor to show up as a teacher or even a different character. These days, Travolta is on Die Hart, a television series with Kevin Hart. Travolta plays Ron Wilcox, a guy teaching Kevin Hart how to become an action movie star.