Patrick Swayze: 15 things you didn't know
Patrick Swayze almost didn't get the part of Johnny in 'Dirty Dancing' -- and for a few reasons too. According to Moviefone, Swayze was a bit older than the character was supposed to be at 34. Yet, maybe more importantly, Jennifer Grey (aka Baby) wasn't too fond of everyone else's heartthrob as a result of their work together on 1984's 'Red Dawn.' Nonetheless, the 'volatile' chemistry the two shared while dancing proved too much to pass up and the result was clearly timeless.
He once starred in a really ridiculous TV commercial for Pabst Blue Ribbon beer that was inspired by 'Saturday Night Fever.'
... we're not kidding, you can watch it here: Patrick Swayze PBR Ad
Patrick got the role of Sam Wheat in 'Ghost' because the film's writer, Bruce Joel Rubin, saw an interview in which Swayze burst into tears after his father was brought up. He thought if a macho guy like Patrick could break into tears like that, he'd be perfect for the part. [Collective swoon ...]
Speaking of 'Ghost,' Patrick Swayze himself considers the pottery scene to be one of the sexiest things he's ever filmed.
He recalled in his autobiography: "It was pretty sexy playing in all that clay, so all we had to do was go with it, let our imaginations run wild, and then touch each other's arms for the sparks to fly."
In January of 2012, stories in the media starting popping up about Patrick being hospitalized. The only problem? He died in September of 2009.
Talk about ghosts ...
And speaking of sexy, Swayze was People Magazine's 'Sexiest Man Alive' in 1991
In high school, Swayze had hopes of going to college on a football scholarship. Only, the night scouts came to check his team out, Patrick got his left leg nearly snapped in half at the knee and it ended his career like that.
Back in the day (high school that is) he also learned to hold his own in a fight. After getting jumped by five bullies at school, Swayze's dad got the school coach to yank all five kids out of class to fight Patrick one-on-one (what?!) -- and you better bet that Patrick downed them all in succession.
Nearly every time the movie 'Road House' plays on TV, Bill Murray (or one of 'his idiot brothers') calls Kelly Lynch's house to tell her husband that Patrick Swayze is having currently relations with his wife in a hilarious ongoing prank revealed by Lynch to the A.V. Club.
On June 1, 2000 Swayze was flying his Cessna 414A plane from Van Nuys, CA to Las Vegas, NM when he lost pressure and had to make an emergency landing on a suburban street in Prescott Valley, AZ.
There is some debate as to whether he was drunk or fumes from his cigarette smoke caused him to suffer from hypoxia -- but either way he expertly landed his plane under the influence of something. Irresponsible? Yep. Impressive nonetheless? Indeed.
Patrick was happily married to his high school sweetheart Lisa Niemi for over 30 years -- until the day he died.
On the set of 'Red Dawn,' Swayze liked to put small M60 explosives in the toilet of director John Milius and detonate them when he was using the restroom for fun. Lesson learned: Patrick Swayze didn't always partake in prank wars ... but he always won.
That majestic man to the left of Patrick is his brother (who you probably didn't even know existed), Don. Don Swayze has made appearances in everything from 'Matlock' and 'Murder, She Wrote' to 'It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia' and 'CSI.'
In 2009 -- the year of his death -- 'Patrick Swayze' was one of the most searched terms on AOL all year. Clearly it doesn't need saying, but still: We love ya Patrick Swayze!
By Eric Sandler
On August 18th, 1952 Patrick Swayze was born in Houston, Texas. Upon his untimely death in 2009 due to an advanced form of pancreatic cancer, the New York Times remembered him as an "actor with physical grace." His "Dirty Dancing" co-star Jennifer Grey called him a "rare and beautiful combination of raw masculinity and amazing grace." Others remembered his iconic roles ("Ghost," "Dirty Dancing," "The Outsiders," "Red Dawn," etc.), his emotional side, his good-natured personality, or his downright sexiness. To us, he'll always simply be among the best.
In honor of his birthday, scroll through above as we count down 15 stories, fun facts, and memories you didn't know about Patrick Swayze.
Celebrity Deaths in 2014
15 Classic 80s Movies
Remembering Patrick Swayze
Jennifer Grey Movies
Dirty Dancing Quotes
The Dirty Dancing Lift
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