Getty Images.
Source: Getty Images.

'Grease:' Meet the Cast of Beloved Movie More Than 40 Years after Its Release

Odette Odendaal
Sep 05, 2019
02:30 P.M.
Share this pen

The characters in "Grease" sang and danced their way into viewers' hearts throughout those summer nights in 1978. Since then, the actors of the iconic film let go of the school rivalries and leather jackets and carried on with life, while some encountered more struggles along the road than others.


The cast from the movie "Grease", attends the Celebration of Paramount Studio's 90th Anniversary on September 22, 2002, at Paramount Studios in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images.


John Travolta solidified his status as Hollywood heartthrob with his role as Danny in "Grease" after his breakthrough appearance in "Saturday Night Fever."


Olivia Newton-John and co-star John Travolta attend their 1978 Hollywood, California, premiere of "Grease." | Source: Getty Images.

Consistently starring in A-list films over the years made John one of Hollywood's biggest stars. Big movies like "Pulp Fiction," "Get Shorty," "Hairspray," "Wild Hogs," and "From Paris With Love" became big box office hits, while he later also reunited with co-star Olivia Newton-John for a Christmas album.



The 29-year-old Olivia had reservations about playing the high-schooler, Sandy in the legendary film, but it turned into one of the best moves of her career.

John Travolta and singer Olivia Newton-John arrive at the G'DAY USA Australia.com Black Tie Gala held at the Hollywood and Highland Grand Ballroom on January 19, 2008, in Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images.


After the film, Olivia made waves with her hit pop song, Physical, and continued her success with several tours and a Las Vegas residency for two years from 2014 that featured 175 shows.


Stockard's role as Pink Lady Rizzo became her most memorable role despite strong appearances in "Six Degrees of Separation" for which she got an Oscar nomination, First Lady Abbey Bartlet in "The West Wing," and "The Good Wife."

Stockard Channing attends the "Other Desert Cities" opening night after party at Marriott Marquis on November 3, 2011, in New York City. | Source: Getty Images.


Also a regular on Broadway, Stockard more recently starred in "Apologia," while she bagged various Tony, Emmy, and Golden Globe awards throughout her career.


Jeff struggled in finding lasting success after "Grease," although he starred in "Taxi" and "Happy Days," which both became big hits.

Jeff Conaway arrives at the 6th annual "TV Land Awards" held at Barker Hanger on June 8, 2008, in Santa Monica, California. | Source: Getty Images.


Previously married to Olivia Newton-John's older sister, Rona for five years, Jeff continued struggling with addiction for many years. Sadly, at the age of 60, Jeff died after contracting pneumonia in 2011.


Didi's acting career took off after she starred as Frenchy in "Grease." Having accumulated about 40 acting credits since then, Didi notably starred in "Grease 2," "The Practice," "Cagney & Lacey," and films such as "The Mimic" and "Most Likely to Murder."

Didi Conn attends the "Grease" 40th anniversary screening at Samuel Goldwyn Theater on August 15, 201,8 in Beverly Hills, California. | Source: Getty Images.



While Barry will always be remembered for the T-Bird jokester, Doody on "Grease," he went on to have a consistent and solid acting career.

Barry most recently featured alongside Didi in "Grease Live" and starred in hit television shows such as "ER," "Criminal Minds," "Murder She Wrote," and "Beverly Hills 90210."

Barry Pearl attends the "Grease" 40th anniversary screening at Samuel Goldwyn Theater on August 15, 2018, in Beverly Hills, California. | Source: Getty Images.



Kelly portrayed the blonde T-Bird Putzie in "Grease," but switched to a career behind the camera after the film.

Actors Michael Tucci, Kelly Ward, Jamie Donnelly and Barry Pearl attend the 2015 TCM Classic Film Festival Opening Night Gala 50th anniversary screening of "The Sound Of Music" at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on March 26, 2015, in Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images.


Having directed voice performances in "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse," Kelly teaches musical theatre at the University of Southern California and works for Disney Television Animation as a voice director.


Best known as the goofy Sonny in the iconic film, Michael went on to have a successful acting career while he also teaches at St Francis High School in California.

Michael Tucci attends the 2015 TCM Classic Film Festival Opening Night Gala 50th anniversary screening of "The Sound Of Music" at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on March 26, 2015, in Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images.


Michael notably starred in "The Heat" as Melissa McCarthy's father and also had a recurring role in "Diagnosis Murder" alongside Dick Van Dyke.


Jamie stood out in the film as Jan, the dorky Pink Lady. She continued acting but made intermittent appearances over the years.

Jamie Donnelly attends IMDb's 25th Anniversary Party co-hosted by Amazon Studios presented by VISINE at Sunset Tower Hotel on October 15, 2015, in West Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images.


While Jamie starred with Johnny Depp in the film "Black Mass," she also featured on television in "Veep," "Can't Hardly Wait," "Cyrus," and "Ray Donovan."


Dinah's film debut in "Grease" as Marty Maraschino launched a successful acting career. In 1980, she earned a Tony Award for her Broadway performance in "I Ought To Be In Pictures" and later starred in the film adaptation as well.

Dinah Manoff attends the 2nd Annual Jewish Image Awards in Film & Television at the Four Seasons Hotel on September 24, 2002, in Beverly Hills, California. | Source: Getty Images.


The actress featured in films such as "Ordinary People," "Welcome Home," and "Child's Play," and also in television series that include "Empty Nest," "Soap," and "State of Grace."


As one of the few actors who played their age, Lorenzo starred as Sandy's 18-year-old love interest, Tom. After the film, Lorenzo mainly starred in soaps such as "The Bold and the Beautiful" and "Falcon Crest," while he also served as a judge on the reality show "Are You Hot?"

Lorenzo Lamas attends the 4th annual Roger Neal Oscar Viewing Dinner Icon Awards and after party at Hollywood Palladium on February 24, 2019, in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images.



Named Cha Cha after her seductive dance moves, Annette snagged a few roles before her personal life and health intervened.


Three months after co-star Jeff Conaway passed away in 2011, Annette also died after a struggle with brain cancer aged 63.


Starring as the bad boy Leo, the actor and dancer later returned for the film's sequel in 1982. He appeared in several movies and television shows over the next ten years until he also sadly passed due to complication from AIDS in 1994 at the age of 46.

As a testament to Olivia Newton-John's modest approach regarding herself, she insisted on a screen test with John Travolta even though the Producer and co-writer, Allan Carr already offered her the part.


Having met Olivia at a party thrown by Helen Reddy, an Australian singer, Allan became "completely smitten" with the actress and wanted her to star Sandy. None the less, she didn't trust her acting nor her good fortune and refused to accept the part until a screentest showed them to have chemistry.

During the film's 40th anniversary year in 2018, John Travolta left the viewers of "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" stunned with dance moves from the iconic movie.