Henry Winkler has expressed regret that he did not accept the role of John Travolta in Grease… “I really ought to have kept my mouth shut”…


Henry Winkler, an actor, producer, and author of children’s books, is one of the few persons who have been able to triumph through as much adversity in order to achieve success in their chosen career. The gifted actor is perhaps best recognized for his role as the slicker with a rakish allure, Arthur “Fonzie” Fonzarelli, on the long-running television comedy “Happy Days,” which he played alongside Ron Howard from 1974 through 1984. It was inevitable that his character would end up being the most popular one on the program, which is why the creators of the show decided to give him an even more significant role. Because of how convincing he was in the part of the naughty child with a good heart, he was nominated for three Primetime Emmys and won two Golden Globes for his performance in the role.

Winkler became a national star because to the show “Happy Days,” but he didn’t want to get caught playing the same sort of role forever and ever. Because he had such a hard time finding employment in front of the camera throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, he eventually decided to try his hand at working behind the scenes instead. He achieved success in the field of producing and directing, most notably for the very popular television series “Macgyver.”

In his latter years, he had great success as a comic actor, portraying memorable characters on famous television programs such as “Arrested Development” and “Parks and Recreation.” He was even nominated for an Emmy award for his work as Gene Cousineau on the HBO dark comedy series “Barry.” After making his debut opposite Adam Sandler in the film “The Waterboy” in 1998, he would go on to play alongside Sandler again in many of his subsequent films, including “Little Nicky,” “Click,” and “You Don’t Mess With The Zohan.”

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After his time on “Happy Days,” Henry Winkler turned down a rather significant position in order to avoid being labeled as a certain sort of actor. He was nearly hired in the part of Danny Zuko, the main character in the musical “Grease,” which ultimately went to John Travolta.

1978 saw the release of the musical “Grease,” which went on to become a huge commercial success when it was shown in cinemas. Those who believed that big-screen musicals and nostalgic scenes from the 1950s were no longer popular among spectators were proven wrong. In the picture, Travolta and the late Olivia Newton-John, who had already established themselves as icons of the 1970s, solidified their status as such.

It has come to light that Newton-John was on the verge of declining the illustrious part of Sandy in “Grease.” The actor participated in a video chat interview with Entertainment Tonight before the broadcast of a sing-along version of “Grease.” She said during the interview that she wasn’t even sure whether she should take the part she was being offered. There were a large number of other actresses who were also competing for the part, so there was a significant potential that Newton-John would not have been chosen in the end.

On the other hand, it seemed that Travolta was really rooting for Newton-John. He started making complimentary remarks about his future co-star and was even tasked with convincing Newton-John to take the part. “Because they saw how reluctant I was to appear in Grease, they had John Travolta try to persuade me to take the part. “And how could you possibly say no to such beautiful blue eyes?” the celebrity said.

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Casting director Joel Thurm for the musical “Grease” said that he had “nobody” in mind to serve as a “backup” in the event that Newton-John declined the part. He added that in the event that she declined, he would portray the character while wearing a poodle skirt. “So it seems like everyone wanted Olivia to be here, but she didn’t immediately accept the invitation. That is the most important fact to take away from this.”

Although Newton-John ended up playing the part, it seems that Winkler was also a strong contender for the part of Danny Zuko before Newton-John was cast in the part.

According to Variety, Winkler turned down an opportunity to play the main part, which ultimately went to Travolta. Travolta was cast in the role. Winkler’s career was going through a rough patch when he received the offer, so it came at the perfect moment. He went on to Explain:

“The situation was so awful that not only was it impossible for me to get employment, but as I was sitting at my desk at Paramount, I honestly wondered, ‘Am I ever going to find something with as much effect as the Fonz?’” How am I going to find out? Will anybody ever inquire about me? There are no offers being made to me.”

But when Winkler was given the part of Danny Zuko, he turned it down because he felt it was too similar to the one he played on “Happy Days,” and he didn’t want to be typecast as the villain. Therefore, he declined the offer.

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In response to Chris Wallace of CNN’s inquiry as to whether or not he was “a fool” for doing so, Winkler said, “Yes. I am. It wasn’t until many years later that I realized… I found myself thinking, “I’ve played the Fonz. I don’t want to do it again, but it’s already occurred, and now people are going to typecast me.

Winker proceeded by saying, “I really should have simply kept my mouth shut and had a great time creating that movie.” Now I go home, tell them I’m not interested, and enjoy a Diet Coke. John Travolta returns to his house after finishing the film and then goes out and purchases a jet.

Despite the fact that he admitted it, however, it was revealed by PEOPLE that Winkler was never really given the part. Thurm said that Winkler was never made a formal offer for the part of Danny, although it is possible that he was brought up in talks about potential candidates for the role. Despite this, Paramount Pictures agreed to distribute the movie after learning that John Travolta would be starring in it.

“Grease” is still considered to be one of the most well-liked films in the musical genre, in spite of the many opportunities that were missed up on. And despite the fact that he wasn’t in it, Winkler has still had a very successful career.

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