Dirty Dancing’s Jennifer Grey on the enduring relatability of ‘I carried a watermelon’

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Dirty Dancing’s Jennifer Grey on the enduring relatability of ‘I carried a watermelon’

Thirty-five years ago this Sunday, thousands of Americans went to see a little rom-com called Dirty Dancing. Shot for a modest $6 million, the music-driven love story between idealistic teen Frances “Baby” Houseman (Jennifer Grey) and hot-blooded dance teacher Johnny Castle (Patrick Swayze) had audiences swooning: Dirty Dancing spent nearly six months in theaters and has since grossed over $63 million worldwide.

Decades later, we still — painful pun alert — have the time of our lives watching (and talking about) Dirty Dancing. And it was a great delight to learn that star Jennifer Grey still loves to talk about the movie, too, not just sharing her memories, but offering thoughtful analysis of the film's “stealth” feminism. On a recent Wednesday afternoon, Grey called EW and graciously allowed us to monopolize far too much of her time discussing all things Dirty Dancing, including the movie's meaning in a post-Roe world, what's happening with the upcoming sequel, and why Baby's “I carried a watermelon” moment resonates so deeply to this day.

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ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: I hope you're not tired of talking about Dirty Dancing.

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