Olivia Newton-John hits back at woke warriors saying Grease is ‘rapey’

Olivia Newton-John has hit back after cancel culture warriors criticised her iconic film Grease.

After the movie aired on British TV over the Christmas holidays, it was criticised on social media as racist, sexist, homophobic and ‘slut-shaming’.

Speaking to the A Life of Greatness podcast, the 72-year-old actress was only too happy to defend Grease against a new generation of woke millennials.

Having her say: Actress and singer Olivia Newton-John has hit back after cancel culture warriors criticised her iconic film Grease

Having her say: Actress and singer Olivia Newton-John has hit back after cancel culture warriors criticised her iconic film Grease

Having her say: Actress and singer Olivia Newton-John has hit back after cancel culture warriors criticised her iconic film Grease 

Olivia said of the backlash: ‘I think it’s kind of silly. I mean, this movie was made in the 1970s about the 1950s.’ 

‘It was a stage play, it’s a musical, it’s fun. It’s a fun movie musical not to be taken so seriously,’ she added.

The singer and medical marijuana campaigner went on to say that people take popular culture ‘too seriously’ these days. 

Calm down, kids: After Grease aired on British TV over the Christmas holidays, it was criticised on social media as racist, sexist, homophobic and 'slut-shaming'

Calm down, kids: After Grease aired on British TV over the Christmas holidays, it was criticised on social media as racist, sexist, homophobic and 'slut-shaming'

Calm down, kids: After Grease aired on British TV over the Christmas holidays, it was criticised on social media as racist, sexist, homophobic and ‘slut-shaming’ 

‘We need to relax a little bit and just enjoy things for what they are,’ she said.

‘I didn’t see it like that at all, I think it’s a fun movie that entertains people.’

Grease was one of the highest grossing films of the ’70s, and went on to become a Hollywood classic. 

Measured response: Olivia said of the backlash, 'I think it's kind of silly. I mean, this movie was made in the 1970s about the 1950s. It was a stage play, it's a musical, it's fun. It's a fun movie musical not to be taken so seriously'

Measured response: Olivia said of the backlash, 'I think it's kind of silly. I mean, this movie was made in the 1970s about the 1950s. It was a stage play, it's a musical, it's fun. It's a fun movie musical not to be taken so seriously'

Measured response: Olivia said of the backlash, ‘I think it’s kind of silly. I mean, this movie was made in the 1970s about the 1950s. It was a stage play, it’s a musical, it’s fun. It’s a fun movie musical not to be taken so seriously’

When the film aired on the BBC on December 26, more than four decades after its cinematic release, many young people were outraged by the high school antics.  

In the final scenes, student Sandy (Olivia) ditches her good-girl image for skintight PVC trousers and takes up smoking so she can impress Danny (John Travolta). 

It prompted one outraged Twitter user to write: ‘Grease is far too sexist and overly white and should be banned from the screen. It is nearly 2021 after all.’

How very dare they! When the film aired on the BBC on December 26, more than four decades after its cinematic release, many young people were outraged by the high school antics

How very dare they! When the film aired on the BBC on December 26, more than four decades after its cinematic release, many young people were outraged by the high school antics

How very dare they! When the film aired on the BBC on December 26, more than four decades after its cinematic release, many young people were outraged by the high school antics 

Another furious viewer complained: ‘Grease sucks on so many levels and the message is pure misogyny.’

A third user agreed, saying: ‘Grease is just the most sexist piece of s**t.’

One scene that caused particular offence to youthful viewers was when Putzie, one of Danny’s friends in the T-Birds gang, positioned himself on the floor to look up the skirts of two female students at the fictional Rydell High.   

Low point: One scene that caused particular offence to youthful viewers was when Putzie, one of Danny's friends in the T-Birds gang, positioned himself on the floor to look up the skirts of two female students at the fictional Rydell High

Low point: One scene that caused particular offence to youthful viewers was when Putzie, one of Danny's friends in the T-Birds gang, positioned himself on the floor to look up the skirts of two female students at the fictional Rydell High

Low point: One scene that caused particular offence to youthful viewers was when Putzie, one of Danny’s friends in the T-Birds gang, positioned himself on the floor to look up the skirts of two female students at the fictional Rydell High

Other viewers complained about the lyric ‘Did she put up a fight?’ in the hit song Summer Nights, in which Danny describes seducing Sandy.

‘So turns out Grease is actually pretty rapey,’ tweeted one aghast viewer, while another said: ‘Misogynistic, sexist and a bit rapey.’

When Grease was released in 1978, film censors gave it an A rating, the equivalent of today’s PG, commenting only about some of the near-the-knuckle language. 

The film still carries a PG rating with a warning of ‘frequent mild sex references and mild language’.  

Childhood classic: When Grease was released in 1978, film censors gave it an A rating, the equivalent of today's PG, commenting only about some of the near-the-knuckle language. Pictured: Olivia and her co-star John Travolta

Childhood classic: When Grease was released in 1978, film censors gave it an A rating, the equivalent of today's PG, commenting only about some of the near-the-knuckle language. Pictured: Olivia and her co-star John Travolta

Childhood classic: When Grease was released in 1978, film censors gave it an A rating, the equivalent of today’s PG, commenting only about some of the near-the-knuckle language. Pictured: Olivia and her co-star John Travolta

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