Friday, July 4, 2008
'Grease' Kid Stuff
Everybody expects so-called high schoolers in movies and TV to be played by actors who are much older than adolescents - I am not the first person to note that viewers would be greatly disturbed to see an actual fifteen-year-old portraying a high school sophomore. So people buy into the fact that most of the actors in Grease were in their late twenties or, in the case of Stockard Channing, as old as thirty-four, which makes her high school pregnancy scare a little less scary.
So I was surprised to learn that Dinah Manoff, who played Marty, was only 19 when the movie was made. (No wonder Vince Fontaine was so hot for her.) She doesn't seem to be any younger than the other Pink Ladies, who were 26 and 30 at the time, and more importantly, she makes the most indelible impression of any of the Pink Ladies or T-Birds, with of course the exception of Didi Conn, and there's no shame at all in that, because, you know, she's Didi Conn.
Jamie Donnelly, who played Jan, was so intimidated by the whole thing that she didn't make another movie for twenty years.