Jennifer Gray became famous after her role as “Baby” in the hit dance classic “Dirty Dancing”. But, the movie’s release came at a terrible time in her life.
The actress and dancer has just had an accident that killed 2 other people before becoming famous. Despite the film’s success, she was unable to celebrate her newfound popularity.
A few years later, Jennifer Gray’s career stalled as she went from a famous actress to a faceless one. Here is her life before and after “Dirty Dancing”.
Image of Jennifer Gray in an interview (left), Jennifer Gray at the premiere of “A Tale Of Love & Darkness” in New York on August 15, 2016, in New York (right) | Photo: Youtube.com/oliveira1983, Getty Images
Jennifer Gray was born to the famous actor, singer, dancer, director and photographer, Joel Grey, on March 26, 1960, in New York. She began taking dance lessons at an early age, and in the early 1980s she had her first small role.
Gray attended Dalton School, where she studied dance and acting and graduated in 1978. After graduating, she enrolled at the Theater’s Neighborhood Playhouse School, where she trained to be an actress in two years.
To support herself while waiting for her roles, she had to work as a waitress. Gray made his debut in an advertisement for Dr. Pepper while making her film debut in the 1984 film “Reckless”.
That same year, she had a small role in Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Cotton Club”, played in the war movie “Red Dawn”, then starred in the 1985 sports drama “American Flyers” and in the series 1986 comedy “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” with Matthew Broderick.
But it was in 1987 that her professional career took an entirely new turn. Gray landed the lead role of Frances “Baby” Houseman in the movie “Dirty Dancing” alongside young Patrick Swayze.
Screenwriter Eleanor Bergstein wrote the screenplay based on her childhood. The film has become a hit dance movie that gives us the most iconic elevator, shot in one go, in the history of cinema.
Once they’re done, Gray has no plans to recreate the elevator. Thanks to this film, she gained worldwide fame with a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress for her role.
Not long before the film was released, she was involved in an accident with Matthew Broderick, her boyfriend at the time.
The crash in Ireland caused Broderick to break his leg while the two passengers in the other car died instantly. He was convicted for careless driving, and Gray was severely whipped.
Despite the success of “Dirty Dancing”, Gray’s grief and survivor’s guilt prevented her from enjoying the film’s success. She didn’t follow the cast for their promotional tours.
Her acting career stalled over time, and the beating she received after the accident left Gray in chronic pain for over 20 years.
The pain also meant that Gray couldn’t do the things she loved as much as she would. She had to give up dancing and only picked it up again in later years.
To worsen her career situation, Gray decided to get her nose done in the early 1990s. She speak:
“I went into the operating room of a celebrity and anonymously. It was like being in a witness protection program or being invisible.”
The result of the rhinoplasty was such a disaster that no one, not even her close friends, recognized her anymore. Her change in appearance was one of the main reasons why agents stopped calling her for movie roles.
Gray was gone for a second nose job to fix the problem with the first one. That’s not the look she wanted, and she calls it “the nose job from hell.”
When Gray changed her appearance, she said that her desire for fame was gone, and that she just wanted to be a wife and mother. However, it took her more than a decade before getting married.
On July 21, 2001, Gray and Marvel’s Agent of SHIELD star, Clark Gregg, married in a ceremony at Martha’s Vineyard after dating for about a year.
On December 3, 2001, the couple welcomed their daughter, Stella Francis, who also became an actress. She acted alongside her father in “Trust Me” and her mother in “Who Do You Think You Are?”
Gray and Gregg announced on July 3, 2020, that they were separating in January 2020. After 19 years, Gregg has officially filed for divorce from Gray.
GREY’S CAREER IN RECENT YEARS
Although Gray had some setbacks, from March 1999 until January 2000, she starred in the sitcom “It’s Like, You Know…” Gray starred, and after two seasons, ABC canceled the series.
When play yourself, she decided to focus on saying things people were saying behind her back to make fun of situations in her life.
After she focused on her plastic surgery issue on the show, Gray hopes she won’t have to deal with it anymore as almost every interview focuses on that topic.
Jennifer Gray at LA Dance Project Annual Gala on October 16, 2021, in Los Angeles | Photo: Getty Images
In 1995, she was a guest star on “Friends” and “Fallen Angels.” That same year, Gray starred in the romantic comedy “Lover’s Knot”.
In 1996, Gray was cast as a lawyer in “Portraits of a Killer, and in 1997 she starred in “Red Meat”. Gray co-starred alongside Ben Affleck and Gwyneth Paltrow in the 2000 film “Bounce”. .
While still dealing with the pain she endured after her 1987 accident, Gray has been offered to do “Dancing with the Stars” several times, and each time she has refused.
However, with encouragement from friends, she agreed to participate in the program and needed to improve her physical condition to prove she was healthy enough.
Doctors discovered that Gray had compressed her spinal cord, and that she had once fallen or once slipped due to paralysis. Her doctor ordered two spine surgeries, and during the surgery, they found a tumor in her thyroid gland.
The benign tumor has now become cancerous and has not been detected; she will have thyroid cancer. Luckily, she didn’t need chemotherapy or radiation, and they completely removed her thyroid.
After the surgery, the doctors placed a titanium plate around her neck, and she was finally ready to participate in “Dancing with the Stars”.
In 2010, Gray joined the show’s 11th season and quickly became the most popular character of the season. Gray consistently has the highest individual scores in most dance styles.
She topped the leaderboard more than any other contestant during the season. The night before the finale, Gray broke a spinal disc but in the end still win program.
At 61, the “Dirty Dancing” star who still looks good has learned not to mind what people think of her and she says she has no regrets about her past.
https://news.amomama.com/283550-dirty-dancings-jennifer-grey-felt-invisi.html Jennifer Gray says she feels invisible after face transformation made her ‘incognito’