The Unexpected Grease Prequel Series Just Got A Full Cast

By Erika Hanson | 3 months ago

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As most everyone knows “Grease is the word,” and today, that word is that Grease is receiving another revival in Hollywood. Announced January 31st through Deadline, the doors of Rydell High will once again open as Paramount+ preps for the news series, Rise of the Pink Ladies arrival later this year. 

Set as a prequel, the ten episodic musical series landed the title Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies, as it seems this time around, the focus will be on the females that once ruled the school. The Grease prequel will be written and produced by Annabel Oakes, notable for her writing on Atypical. Oakes will also serve as the showrunner. On production, paramount nabbed Alethea Jones (Made for Love). Teasing a long casting lineup with a few familiar faces, Shanel Bailey (The Equalizer), Madison Thompson (Ozark), Jackie Hoffman (Only Murders in the Building), Marisa Davila (I Am Not Okay With This), Jonathan Nieves (Penny Dreadful: City of Angels), Jason Schmidt (FBI: Most Wanted), Tricia Fukuhara (Dante Falls), Maxwell Whittington-Cooper (When They See Us), Ari Notartomaso (Paranormal Activity: Next of Kin), and newcomer Cheyenne Isabel Wells are set to star in the upcoming series.

Taking place four years before Sandy Olsson ever even knew Danny Zuko existed, Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies will be set at Rydell High in 1954. Even with just a four-year difference, the timing change will surely lead to a new lineup of styles and music, as the time difference depicts a period before rock and roll reigned supreme. According to the official synopsis, the musical will center around four fed-up outcasts-a stark change from the original pink ladies’ popular demeanor from the original Grease- who dare to have fun on their own terms, sparking a moral panic that will change Rydell High Forever. 

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Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta in Grease (1978)

While setting an origin story for the most famous high school in pop culture, Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies will feature all-new original music that’s being written and produced by Justin Tranter, a grammy-nominated songwriter, and producer best known for his work on albums from Dua Lipa and Lady Gaga. The coined dance pieces will be choreographed by Jamal Sims, best known for creating the dance moves in Disney’s hit music Descendant 3. While both men showcase an impressive work history, it will be interesting to see how their modern pop tones pan over into a completely different decade of music.

Since first appearing on the big screen in 1978, Grease has remained one of the most iconic films in pop culture over four decades later. With catchy tunes and a classic love tale as old as time, the nostalgia over Grease never really faded. As for the film’s legacy, there have been plenty of spin-offs surrounding the original film. However, most of them were largely coined flops. In 1982,  Maxwell Caulfield and Michelle Pfeiffer starred in Grease 2, but the film received vast negative reviews and never even came close to having the same effect as its predecessor. Going back to the franchise’s roots, Grease received a live television special broadcast by Fox in 2016. The live remake incorporated elements from both the original play and the 1978 film. However, even starring musical favorite celeb Vanessa Hudgens wasn’t enough to save the revival, which proved yet another flop in the Grease franchise.