You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Patrick Swayze dies at 57

Actor had been battling pancreatic cancer

Patrick Swayze, who had breakout roles in “Dirty Dancing” and “Ghost,” died in Los Angeles on Monday after a nearly two-year battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 57.

Swayze most recently starred as a tough FBI agent in A&E drama series “The Beast.” His battle with cancer played out publicly as his condition worsened just as the show’s first season bowed on the cabler.

Trained as a dancer, the half-Apache actor started out in teen heartthrob roles and segued into romantic leads, while also appearing onstage.

Swayze was raised in Houston, Texas, and his mother was a choreographer and ballet school owner. He trained with the Harkness Ballet and Joffrey Ballet schools in New York, starting his career dancing for “Disney on Parade.” After appearing in “Grease” on Broadway, he made his film debut in 1979 in “Skatetown, U.S.A.”

He was cast in several youth-appeal pics, including “The Outsiders” and “Red Dawn,” before netting a major role in Civil War miniseries “North and South” in 1985.

His popularity rose with the dance instructor role opposite Jennifer Grey in 1987’s “Dirty Dancing,” which became a surprise hit. He received a Golden Globe nom for the perf and sang one of the songs on the soundtrack.

After several minor films, his career picked up with “Road House” and then “Ghost,” in 1990, where his character romantically haunted Moore’s after he was murdered. He co-starred with Keanu Reeves in surfer actioner “Point Break” before injuring himself when he fell from a horse while filming HBO’s “Letters From a Killer” in 1996. Both his legs were broken, and the injury put a dent in his career until 2000, when he appeared in features “Waking Up in Reno” and “Forever Lulu.”

That year, he was piloting his twin-engine plane when he had to make an emergency landing in Prescott Valley, Ariz., with some reports saying he appeared to be intoxicated. It was later determined that his behavior was due to the effects of his descent.

His later film roles included “Donnie Darko,” “King Solomon’s Mines” and a cameo in “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights.”

Onstage, Swayze starred in a London production of “Guys and Dolls,” in 2006, and earlier appeared on Broadway in “Goodtime Charley” (1975) and “Chicago” (2003).

In addition to “The Beast,” he recently starred in “Christmas in Wonderland” and played an aging rock star in the unreleased “Powder Blue.”

He married Lisa Niemi, one of his mother’s dance students, in 1975.

He is survived by his wife; brother, Don, an actor; and his mother.

More Film

  • Nicolas Cage

    Film News Roundup: Nicolas Cage's 'Jiu Jitsu' Obtains Cyprus Support

    In today’s film news roundup, Cyprus is backing Nicolas Cage’s “Jiu Jitsu”; “The Nanny” and “Amityville 1974” are moving forward; “Milk” is returning to theaters; and Garrett Hedlund’s “Burden” is getting distribution. CYPRUS REBATE Nicolas Cage’s “Jiu Jitsu” has become the first international film to use Cyprus’ new tax credit-rebate program by filming entirely in [...]

  • Zhao Tao

    Zhao Tao Gets Candid in Kering's Shanghai Women in Motion Showcase Interview

    Zhao Tao is one of the most recognizable faces in Chinese art cinema thanks to her longtime collaboration with director Jia Zhangke, whom she married in 2012. From 2000’s “Platform” to last year’s “Ash is Purest White,” her work has plumbed the moral depths of modern China and brought stories of the country’s drastic change [...]

  • Skyline on the Huangpu River with

    Chinese-American Film Festival Seeks Particular Dialog

    With U.S.-China ties at an ever-sinking low, the Chinese-American Film and TV Festival on Tuesday pledged to improve communications between the two countries —  at a Chinese language-only press conference Tuesday that had few foreigners present. Most attendees who took to the stage to give congratulatory speeches that seemed more intent on heaping praise upon [...]

  • Murder Mystery

    Netflix Reveals Record-Breaking Stats for Sandler-Aniston 'Murder Mystery' Flick

    “Murder Mystery,” the latest Adam Sandler film to debut on Netflix, broke viewing records on the streaming service, the company revealed Tuesday. The film, which is co-headlined by Jennifer Aniston, was seen by close to 30.9 million households in its first 3 days, according to a tweet sent out Tuesday afternoon. 🚨ADAM SANDLER AND JENNIFER [...]

  • Agents Accuse Writers Guild of Refusing

    Writers Guild 'Plans to Respond' to Agents' Proposal as Frustration Mounts

    In a sign of increasing frustration, Hollywood agents have accused the Writers Guild of America of foot-dragging in the bitter two-month dispute. “It has become clear as more days pass that the Guild is not interested in making a deal,” said the negotiating committee for the agents in statement issued Tuesday. “Over the past year, [...]

  • Jermaine Fowler arrives at the 69th

    Jermaine Fowler to Co-Star With Eddie Murphy in 'Coming 2 America' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Jermaine Fowler is set to play one of the leads opposite Eddie Murphy in Paramount’s sequel “Coming 2 America,” sources tell Variety. “Hustle & Flow” helmer Craig Brewer is on board to direct the pic with the studio planning an August 7, 2020 release. Plot details of “Coming 2 America” are unknown, as are the [...]

  • Henry Golding attends the Fragrance Foundation

    Henry Golding Starts Long House Shingle With 'Inheritance,' 'Harrington's Greatest Hits'

    “Crazy Rich Asians” star Henry Golding has started Long House Productions in partnership with China’s Starlight Cultural Entertainment Group with two features in the works. Golding’s first feature under the Long House banner is action adventure “The Inheritance,” based on an original story idea by Alistair Hudson and Golding. Hudson is writing the script for [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content