Footloose’s 25th Anniversary Bringing Home the Bacon

215

Based on a true story, the film Footloose portrays the eternal battle between morality and youthful pleasure, as it follows Ren McCormack (Kevin Bacon), a cool Chicago teen who moves to a small town that has banned dancing and music — believing that the path will lead to alcohol, fighting, sex, and is convinced that it is a sin.

Throughout the movie, he finds allies within Willard (Christopher Penn), Rusty (Sarah Jessica Parker), and Ariel (Lori Singer), the soft-hearted bad girl daughter of the Rev. Shaw Moore (John Lithgow), with whom he falls for, as they and the entire student body set out to revoke the law and have a senior prom.

Released in the winter of 1984, Footloose went to gross $80 million at the U.S. box office, and made Bacon a household name. However, what made the film a success is the soundtrack released three days before its premiere. With an infectious material of power-pop, hard rock, and R&B tunes, the soundtrack went #1 and spawing several Top 40 hits — including the unforgettable title track from Kenny Loggins and Denise Williams’ “Let’s Hear It for the Boy”, as both went to #1 and was each nominated for an Oscar for Best Original Song. Footloose made Loggins both an international superstar and the king of soundtracks throughout the 1980s, as the song is ranked #96 of the American Film Institute’s list of “AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Songs”.

Footloose even made onto the stage when it debuted as a musical on Broadway from 1998-2000, and developed a loyal following and was nominated for four Tony Awards. Since then, it has had productions in London, the United Kingdom, and is currently touring nationally around the United States until June of this year. And now 25 years later, Paramount Pictures is planning for a big screen remake with High School Musical heartthrob Zac Efron as Ren and Kenny Ortega directing and choreographing the movie; filming is to set begin this spring.

The Good Book says that there is a time to weep, a time to mourn, a time to laugh — and a time to dance, and 25 years later, that time is still now … to cut loose — Footloose!