In 1984, we all enjoyed the movie Footloose, with its toe-tapping music and awesome dancing and young, good-looking stars. But was it at all believable? It’s 1984! We’ve been through disco! What town doesn’t allow dancing? You might be surprised to learn that the film was based on a true story.
1. IT WAS BASED ON ELMORE CITY, OKLAHOMA.
Elmore City had forbidden public dancing by law since its founding. In January of 1979, the local high schoolers asked that the rules be changed so that they could have a prom, to the anger of the reverend from the United Pentecostal Church. The kids won and got to dance on prom night. Dean Pitchford (lyricist for Fame songs "Red Light", "Fame", and "I Sing The Body Electric") read about all of it and visited the town. Pitchford had his screenplay after 22 drafts.
The production was really hard on Kevin Bacon.
9. BACON WENT UNDERCOVER AS A HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT.
Only the principal and guidance counselor at Payson Utah High School knew the true identity of one “Ren McCormack,” a transfer student from Philadelphia. The then 24-year-old Bacon was terrified, and was treated the way his character ended up being treated in the movie. He only lasted two to three hours.
10. BACON DIDN’T REALIZE WHAT HE WAS GETTING HIMSELF INTO.
The script, according to Bacon, “didn’t really indicate anything” and led him to believe he didn’t need a choreographer. He spent three weeks of dance training with Lynne Taylor-Corbett. Bacon also worked on his gymnastics, and “worked the skin off his hands.”
And it only got worse for him, as several other items on the list will show. Read all 18 facts about Footloose at mental_floss.