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Tony Roberts Joins ABC / Lionsgate’s “Dirty Dancing”

NOTE: This article is 6 years old and may not include the most recent information.

Tony Roberts (Law & Order, Annie Hall) has been cast as ‘Max Kellerman,’ the owner of Kellerman’s – a 1960’s Catskills Mountains resort – and a longtime friend of the Housemans.  With a mixture of Borscht Belt humor and quick wit, Max has been catering to the same Jewish families for decades, offering them a summer filled with games, activities, singing and dancing, and the possibility of a little romance.  A tough-minded businessman who’s pulled his resort through hard times, Max is grooming his grandson Neil to take over one day, because he knows that times are changing and maybe he’s too rigid to change with them.

Dirty Dancingis a three-hour filmed musical event and an adaptation of the beloved 1987 hit romantic drama and instant movie classic. Dirty Dancing will air on ABC.

Produced by Lionsgate Televisionin association with Allison Shearmur Productions

Academy Award®-nominated actress, singer and author Abigail Breslin(Freak Show, Scream Queens, Little Miss Sunshine) stars as lead ‘Baby,’ an innocent young woman who vacations with her affluent parents at an early 1960’s Catskill Mountains resort and gets swept off her feet by a handsome, working-class dance instructor.

This new ABC network musical event will also star Emmy® Award-winning actress Debra Messing (The Mysteries of Laura, Smash, Will & Grace) as ‘Marjorie Houseman,’ Houseman’s wife and mother of Baby (Abigail Breslin) and Lisa. She is a meticulous 1960’s housewife who takes great pride in her family and is using this summer vacation to try and rekindle her romance with her workaholic husband.

Grammy®-nominated singer/actress/dancer Nicole Scherzinger (Best Time Ever with Neil Patrick Harris) has been cast as ‘Penny,’ Johnny’s dance partner and part of the entertainment staff at an early 1960’s Catskill Mountains resort.  She and Johnny enlist Baby’s help and teach her to dance.

Golden Globe Award-winning actress Katey Sagal (Sons Of Anarchy, Furst Family) has been cast as ‘Vivian Pressman,’ Kellerman’s “bungalow bunny,” a former beauty queen who likes to seduce younger male staff members like Johnny.  Recently divorced and fabulously wealthy, Vivian introduces Marjorie to the freedoms of being single, causing her to question her own marriage.  Vivian isn’t used to being rejected, so when Johnny calls things off to be with Baby, she takes matters into her own hands.

Sarah Hyland (Modern Family) will play ‘Lisa Houseman,’ Baby’s older, extroverted sister who spends summer vacation with her family at an early 1960’s Catskill Mountains resort and falls for ‘Robbie,’ a womanizing waiter.

Bruce Greenwood (American Crime Story: The People vs. OJ Simpson, Star Trek Into Darkness) has been cast in the role of ‘Dr. Jake Houseman,’ a neighborhood kid who made good, now a well-known, type-A heart surgeon.  A longtime guest of Kellerman’s, Jake met his wife, Marjorie, waiting tables there and is now returning for the first time in ten years.  Jake does his best to protect his beloved youngest daughter ‘Baby’ as she develops a summer crush on the resort’s dance instructor and makes friends with the staff.

Singer/dancer/actor/bodybuilder Colt Prattes (P!nk’s music video “Try” and her The Truth About Love Tour, Rock of Ages) will be showing Baby (Abigail Breslin) the time of her life as romantic lead ‘Johnny,’ a charismatic, skilled dance instructor and leader of the working-class entertainment staff at an early 1960’s Catskill Mountains resort. Prattes gained national attention alongside P!nk in the music video for her hit “Try”, and subsequent performances at the 2014 Grammy Awards and American Music Awards.

Legendary icon Billy Dee Williams (Star Wars, Brian’s Song, Batman) has been cast in the role of ‘Tito,’ the charismatic, lively, long-time Band Leader for the early 1960’s Catskill Mountains resort.  Tito oversees and advises the resort’s musicians and entertainers, and must acquiesce to the changing times.

Trevor Einhorn (Mad Men, Sons & Daughters, Frasier) has been cast as ‘Neil,’ Max Kellerman’s grandson and heir to the resort.  Skinny, awkward, and tightly wound, what Neil lacks in charm and tact, he makes up for with his earnestness, gallantry, and progressive views.  Neil takes an immediate interest in Baby (Abigail Breslin), which her father strongly supports, much to Baby’s embarrassment.  Neil has a good grasp of his grandfather’s business and is ready to try and keep Kellerman’s alive through the second half of the century.

Actor-Dancer-Choreographer Beau “Casper” Smart (Step Up 3D) as ‘Billy.” Billy is Johnny’s close friend from the old neighborhood.  Billy mostly works as a bellhop and does maintenance jobs for the staff.  He likes to let loose and dance with Johnny and Penny after hours in the Staff Quarters.

Quinton Johnson (Everybody’s Wants Some!!) has been cast as ‘Marco.’ Marco is the lead singer and guitarist in Tito Suarez’s band and one of the stars at Kellerman’s resort.  A nice and decent guy, he develops a friendship with Lisa Houseman that runs dangerously close to a summer romance.

Executive Produced byAllison Shearmur (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, The Hunger Games franchise; Cinderella”) Eleanor Bergstein, who wrote the screenplay for the original movie;  and Grammy Award® nominee Adam Anders (Glee, Rock of Ages), who also serves as Executive Music Producer.

Music by Executive Music ProducerAdam Anders and Peer Astrom (Madonna, Glee).

Judy Cairo(Boychoir, Crazy Heart) serves as Producer

Adapted for television by Emmy Award®-nominee Jessica Sharzer(American Horror Story, The L Word),

Directed by Wayne Blair(The Sapphires, Septembers of Shiraz),

Choreography by the Tony Award®-winning Andy Blankenbuehler, who most recently choreographed the hit Broadway musical Hamilton, and previously directed and choreographed Bring It On on Broadway.  He also choreographed the Broadway productions of In the Heights, 9 to 5, and Annie.  Blankenbuehler was also a guest choreographer for So You Think You Can Dance.

Academy Award® and Emmy Award® nominee Stephen Altman serves as Production Designer (Gosford Park, Georgia O’Keeffe)

Dirty Dancing is a global pop culture phenomenon – the film’s soundtrack generated two multi-platinum albums and the single “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life” won the Golden Globe® and Academy Award® for Best Original Song, as well as a Grammy® for Best Duet.  The film has been an iconic franchise title in the Lionsgate library for over a decade, selling hundreds of thousands of DVD’s and digital copies each year.


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