Olivia Newton-John defends 'Grease' after critics call it sexist: 'We need to relax a little bit'

By , Audacy

Olivia Newton-John has some words for those who labeled “Grease" as sexist film that lacks diversity.

Critics took issue with the 1978 film when the BBC aired it over the holidays.

According to Britain’s The Times, the Newton-John and John Travolta-led film was accused of misogyny, racism, and homophobia.

Now, the 72-year-old who played Sandy Olsson, is speaking out. In a recent  interview on the Australian podcast "A Life of Greatness,” Newton-John said the comments are “kind of silly.”

She pointed out that viewers have to remember that the movie was made roughly four decades ago.

"The movie was made in the ‘70s about the ‘50s," she said. "It’s fun. It’s a fun movie musical and not to be taken so seriously. I think everyone is taking everything so seriously. We need to relax a little bit and just enjoy things for what they are."

She explained that she doesn’t see the film in the same light as the critics.

To her, “it’s just a fun movie that entertains people. That’s all.”

The actress also opened up about her hesitations to play a 15-year-old when she was 28.

She recalls that the studio “sent John Travolta to talk me into it.”

She remembers looking into his “piercing blue eyes” and thinking “how can you resist that, right?”

Newton-John said she’s remained closed with Travolta all these years as they “shared something incredibly unique making that film that is still so loved.”

Back in 2019, she said they have a “connection” and that he’s a “wonderful human being.”

The feeling is mutual for Travolta, who previously raved about his former co-star and said he admired her strength and perseverance while battling stage 4 cancer.

Newton-John was diagnosed in 2017, and recently revealed she’s “feeling great” and launching the Olivia Newton-John Foundation Fund with her husband to support research into plant medicine for cancer.

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Featured Image Photo Credit: Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images