“Dirty Dancing” Star Jennifer Grey Is Reborn Like a Phoenix 35 Years After “The Nose Job From Hell”

11 months ago

Long before Dirty Dancing propelled Jennifer Grey into the stratosphere of international acclaim, etching her name as an iconic legend of the 1980s, she confronted the pendulum swings of fortune and the adoption of fateful decisions, such as rhinoplasty. Her personal journey bears no resemblance to the innocent character of Baby Houseman, but rather delves into a world that few have witnessed. Through the passage of time, Grey received from public life, her absence spanning decades, shrouded in mystery. And now, like a phoenix ascending from the ashes, she resurfaces, carrying with her a memoir that reveals the extraordinary odyssey of survival.

Her mom told her to get a nose job.


Having an Oscar-winning actor for a dad and a famous singer and actress for a mom, Jennifer Grey wasn’t a stranger to the movie industry and wanted to follow in her parents’ footsteps as she grew up. But the aspiring actress’s mother, Jo Wilder, suggested she undergo rhinoplasty if she wanted to make a career out of being under the spotlight.

Grey recalls her mama’s advice: “It’s too hard to cast you. Make it easier for them.” And even though at the time the young woman was upset by her mom’s words, she now admits, “She loves me, loved me, always has, and she was pragmatic.”

After all, both her mom and her dad had nose jobs, and they knew what it would take to make it in Hollywood. However, young Grey resisted the idea of getting the procedure and explained, “I was completely anti-rhinoplasty.”

Mega-fame, then deception

East News

Little did she know back then, fame was waiting for her just around the corner, and her life was about to be completely transformed. In fact, at the age of 27, Grey was catapulted to worldwide fame after being cast as one of the 2 main characters in the coming-of-age 1987 movie, Dirty Dancing. She starred as “Baby” Houseman, a young woman who falls in love with her dance instructor, played by Patrick Swayze.

And although Grey became the biggest star in Hollywood for a while thanks to the colossal success of the movie, her career, however, didn’t explode as some expected.

But her personal life was quite intense

Jennifer shared almost two decades of matrimony with Clark Gregg and has a daughter with him. But during her career, she has been involved in several notable romantic relationships with fellow luminaries of Hollywood.

Grey’s love journey includes a noteworthy connection with her co-star from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”, Matthew Broderick. Their relationship garnered significant attention when a tragic car accident occurred during their vacation in Ireland.

Jennifer was also briefly linked to “Pirates of the Caribbean” star Johnny Depp in 1989.

During a certain period, the actress was briefly associated with the renowned star of “Back to the Future,” Michael J. Fox. However, their relationship appeared to be short-lived, and it seems that their romantic connection ended amicably. Interestingly, Jennifer maintains a friendship with Tracy Pollan, Michael J. Fox’s wife of more than three decades.

Becoming unrecognizable

Mary Evans / AF Archive / Graham Whitby Boot / East News

This is when Grey finally gave in to the idea of going under the knife. She had her first nose job shorty after Dirty Dancing, followed by a second rhinoplasty a little while later. But she explained that this decision has had a transformative impact on her. For a long time after the surgery, the actress regretted her decision, which she calls “the nose job from hell.”

She revealed that her face had changed so much after the second procedure, that actor Michael Douglas didn’t even recognize her during a movie premiere. Grey realized the irreversible effect this transformation would have on her future. She admitted, “And it became the thing, the idea of being completely invisible from one day to the next. In the world’s eyes, I was no longer me.”

She’s now fulfilled and thriving.

Today, at 62, the actress is more comfortable in her skin than ever before. She notes, “I’ve never felt what I’m feeling these days.” She positively exclaims, “I believe in my heart that the second half of a woman’s life is the best half.” As a matter of fact, these days, Grey is busy and thriving. She has written her memoir and is even working on a Dirty Dancing sequel, 35 years after the first one made her famous.

Moreover, she has now reached inner peace after having reflected on her past decisions and the reason why she was kept away from Hollywood. She says, “I spent so much energy trying to figure out what I did wrong, why I was banished from the kingdom.” She adds, “That’s a lie. I banished myself.”

As Jennifer Grey ventures into new projects while simultaneously revisiting her beloved character from “Dirty Dancing”, where costume designers were true geniuses, fans and audiences alike eagerly await the forthcoming sequel, eager to witness her captivating performances on both the big and small screens. Because we need to admit that this movie was one of the artworks that stars stole our hearts. After all, stars often get their second chance at fame after experiencing the consequences of their wrong decisions and regretting plastic surgery.

Preview photo credit Jim Smeal / Ron Galella Collection / Getty Images, Mary Evans / AF Archive / Graham Whitby Boot / East News


Get notifications
Lucky you! This thread is empty,
which means you've got dibs on the first comment.
Go for it!

Related Reads