Where are the cast of Grease now over 40 years later?

22 December 2020, 13:33 | Updated: 9 August 2022, 09:51

It's been 40 years since Grease took over the world in 1978, cementing it as one of the biggest and most loved musicals of all time.

Wop ba-ba lu-mop and wop bam boom!

But what have the students of Rydell High been up to since then? Grab your T-bird jacket and let's find out...

1. John Travolta (Danny)

John Travolta / Grease

Easily the biggest star to come from Grease, John had his breakthrough role with Saturday Night Fever the year before and continued his hot streak with Grease as hunk Danny.

Since then, he has become one of Hollywood's biggest stars. He had over a decade in the A-list wilderness, before 1994's Pulp Fiction came along. He's had several successes over the last couple of decades, from Wild Hogs, Hairspray, From Paris With Love and Get Shorty.

More recently, he won acclaim for his role as lawyer Robert Shapiro in the TV drama The People vs. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story. A couple of years ago, he reunited with Olivia Newton-John for a Christmas album, and they have since teamed up for a mini Grease reunion.

2. Olivia Newton-John (Sandy)

Olivia Newton John / Grease

Already a huge country star, the Australian singer was reluctant to star at first as she was too old to play a high-schooler (she turned 29 while shooting!) but this was easily Olivia's biggest and best career move.

She went on to have more pop success with songs such as 'Physical', and continued to tour for the next few decades. She played 175 shows as part of her Las Vegas residency from 2014 to 2016.

In May 2017, it was announced that her breast cancer had returned and metastasized to her lower back. In March 2018, she gave an update on her condition, saying she felt "really good".

Tragically, Olivia passed away at the age of 73, on August 8, 2022. John Travolta led the tributes, saying: "My dearest Olivia, you made all of our lives so much better. Your impact was incredible. I love you so much."

3. Stockard Channing (Rizzo)

Stockard Channing / Grease

While Pink Lady Rizzo will forever be her most iconic role, Stockard has had a hugely successful acting career away from Rydell. She's been nominated for an Oscar (for Six Degrees of Separation), various Golden Globes and has won an Emmy and Tony award. 

She famously played First Lady Abbey Bartlet in The West Wing for seven years, and more recently appeared in The Good Wife. She is also a regular on Broadway, and recently hit the West End in Apologia.

4. Jeff Conaway (Kenickie)

Jeff Conaway / Grease

Jeff actually played Danny in the original stage version of Grease (his pal John Travolta originally played Doody!), and he later found huge TV successes in shows such as Happy Days and Taxi.

He was never quite able to sustain success after playing Kenickie in the movie, but kept working in TV and film. He suffered from various issues with addiction, and appeared on various reality TV shows. In 2011, he died at the age of 60 after contracting pneumonia.

At one point, Jeff was married to Olivia Newton-John's older sister, Rona, for five years.

5. Didi Conn (Frenchy)

Didi Conn / Grease

Didi is a regular on the Grease convention circuit, and never shies away from donning her Pink Ladies jacket.

She has continued to act over the years, appearing in around 40 TV and movie projects, including Happy Days, Cagney & Lacey, Grease 2 (where she reprised her role), Transparent and The Wild Thornberrys.

In 2019, Didi made a surprise appearance as a contestant on ITV's Dancing on Ice.

6. Barry Pearl (Doody)

Barry Pearl / Grease

Barry will always be best known for playing T-Bird jokester Doody, and originally played Sonny in the stage version.

He went on to feature in the likes of Murder She Wrote, Beverly Hills 90210, House, Criminal Minds and ER. He recently popped up alongside Didi in Grease Live.

7. Kelly Ward (Putzie)

Kelly Ward / Grease

After playing blonde T-Bird Putzie, Kelly went on to have a career behind the camera.

He now works as a voice director for Disney Television Animation, and has directed voice performances in Mickey Mouse Clubhouse among many others. He also teaches musical theatre at the University of Southern California.

8. Michael Tucci (Sonny)

Michael Tucci / Grease

After playing goofball Sonny in the film, he went on to have various TV roles including a regular part alongside Dick Van Dyke in Diagnosis Murder.

In 2013, he played Melissa McCarthy's dad in The Heat, and he currently teaches at St Francis High School in California.

9. Jamie Donnelly (Jan)

Jamie Donnelly / Grease

Jamie continues to act after playing dorky Pink Lady Jan. In recent years, she has popped up in Can’t Hardly Wait, Cyrus, Veep and Ray Donovan.

In 2015, she starred alongside Johnny Depp in the movie Black Mass.

10. Dinah Manoff (Marty)

Dinah Manoff / Grease

Tony Award-winning Dinah went on to feature in films including Child’s Play, Welcome Home and Ordinary People after Grease.

While she has appeared at various Grease celebrations, she has not had any acting credits since 2008.

11. Lorenzo Lamas (Tom)

Lorenzo Lamas / Grease

Lorenzo was just 18 when he played Sandy's love interest Tom (one of the few actually playing his age!).

Since then, he is best known for his role soaps Falcon Crest and The Bold and the Beautiful. He was also a judge on US show Are You Hot? and even had his own reality series Leave It To Lamas about his family.

12. Annette Charles (Cha Cha)

Cha Cha / Grease

Annette had a few roles after playing the temptress dancer Cha Cha in Grease.

Sadly, in 2011 (just three months after Jeff Conaway died), she passed away from brain cancer at the age of 63.

13. Dennis C Stewart (Leo 'Craterface')


Actor and dancer Dennis famously played the ultimate bad boy in Craterface, and he later returned for the sequel in 1982.

He went on to have various roles on TV and film over the next decade. In 1994, he died at the age of 46 due to complications from AIDS.