One of the biggest stars of the ’70s and ’80s has died: Olivia Newton-John, the platinum-selling recording artist who starred in the smash-hit musical movie Grease, has died at 73.
She may have passed away but she will remain alive and well in the memory of millions of fans around the world.The singer and actress was always a sight to behold with her dazzling smile and charming personality.
She won the hearts of millions around the world with her role as Sandy in the movie ‘Grease’ starring alongside actor John Travolta. Her duet with Danny Zuko aka John Travolta, ‘You’re the one that I want’ in the grand finale became one of the best-selling singles of all time. Newton-John’s star power helped Grease become a smash hit: it was the highest-grossing film of the year, becoming the highest-grossing movie musical of all time, a record it held for decades.
”I don’t think anyone could have imagined a movie would go on almost 40 years and would still be popular and people would still be talking to me about it all the time and loving it,” Newton-John told CNN in 2017. “It’s just one of those movies. I’m very lucky to have been a part of it. It’s given so many people pleasure.”
After her role in ‘Grease’, she was propelled to new heights of stardom, the likes of which she had never seen before. She is one of the best-selling recording artists of all time, with over 100 million records sold.
Newton-John also went on to star in other movies including another one alongside Travolta in Two of a Kind. Her singing career led her to win four Grammy awards and she also has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
The actress, however, had to slow down in life when she was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. She was first diagnosed with cancer in 1992 and then again in 2013. She received treatment and recovered, and became an advocate for breast cancer research.
But in 2017 she was told that her cancer had spread to her bones.
Despite her battle with the disease, the singer stayed positive and continued to promote research. She bravely fought the disease and remained in remission for almost 25 years till the cancer came back for the third time.
“I’m so lucky that I’ve been through this three times and I’m still here. I’m living with it. It’s just reinforced my gratitude,” she told 60 Minutes Australia.
“We know we’re gonna die at some point, and we don’t know when it is. When you’re given a cancer diagnosis or a scary honest diagnosis, you’re suddenly given a possibility of a time limit,” she explained. “So every day is a gift.”
Since she was older the third time cancer returned, her health took a major blow. This meant she only made a handful of public appearances and mostly kept herself out of the public eye.
In 2019, the legendary actress appeared alongside her Grease co-star John Travolta for three special sing-a-long events in Florida just before Christmas.
Newton-John appeared with Travolta for the first time since the iconic movie in 1978 and even dressed in their Grease costumes for the shows. After more than 40 years after Grease‘s release, John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John were back as Danny and Sandy.
“First time in costume since we made the movie,” Newton-John captioned a photo on her Instagram and added: “So excited!!”
Speaking with reporters after another Grease event in 2017, Newton-John said she doesn’t think about her diagnosis much.
“Life is a gift and I’ve had an amazing life and I intend to keep going with it and I want to help other people with cancer of course,” she told People.
“Olivia is a survivor and she’s smart and she’s got a lot of life in her and I think she looks at it from the glass half full always and that’s her beautiful, natural approach towards life and I think we all need to do that,” Travolta added.
Hence, after the news of Oliva Newton-John’s death went public, Travolta was naturally one of the first celebrities who paid tribute to the late singer and actress.
John Travolta posted a picture of the star from her younger years, with a heart-touching caption. He wrote, “My dearest Olivia, you made all of our lives so much better. Your impact was incredible. I love you so much. We will see you down the road and we will all be together again. Yours from the first moment I saw you and forever!”
During all these years, Olivia Newton-John never let her cancer battles ruin her spirit.