Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta had great chemistry in the beloved 1978 movie musical Grease. Their on-screen performances as Sandy Olsson and Danny Zuko, are often praised for their convincing chemistry throughout the film.
In the musical romantic comedy, Sandy Olsson (Olivia Newton-John) and Danny Zuko (John Travolta), reunite at Rydell High after a summer romance. It is a love story set in the 1950s, filled with singing and dancing.
Earlier during the casting of the film, the actor, John Travolta, was very firm about casting Newton-John in a classic film. He strongly believed that she was the only suitable choice for the role.
John Travolta was Adamant on Casting Olivia Newton-John in Grease
When John Travolta was asked at the 40th-anniversary screening (via Oscars), “When you think back 40 years to Grease, what’s the first thing that comes to mind,” Travolta gushed “Olivia.” He then went on to say because she was his “favorite thing about doing Grease.”
He was then asked: “And you were really instrumental, I hear, in actually getting Olivia cast.” The actor recalled that it was because of the album in which the actress was featured with those beautiful blue eyes:
“There was utterly no one else. If you were a young man in the ’70s, if you remember that [If You Love Me, Let Me Know] album cover of Olivia with that shirt on, with those big blue eyes staring at you… every boy’s, every man’s dream was, ‘Oh, I’d love for that girl to be my girlfriend.’ So, when I had the privilege to have input on the casting, I said, ‘There is no other person in the universe other than Olivia Newton-John to play Sandy.'”
His decision was indeed justified because the film achieved great success both critically and commercially. It even became the highest-grossing musical film at the time.
Grease Proved to be a Lucky Charm for Olivia Newton-John Thanks to John Travolta
Randal Kleiser‘s film became one of the highest-grossing live-action musicals ever. Its soundtrack produced two No. 1 hits including You the One That I Want and Summer Nights, sung by the lead actors.
In addition to that, Hopelessly Devoted to You, performed by Newton-John, earned an Oscar nomination for Best Original Song at the 51st Academy Awards.
After Grease, the Toomorrow star then starred in another musical, Xanadu in 1980, which has become a camp classic over the years. She again reunited with Travolta for the 1983 film Two of a Kind.
Watch Grease on Prime Video.