Little Known Facts about the Late Patrick Swayze

GHOST, Patrick Swayze, 1990
Everett Collection

Had the world not lost Patrick Swayze in 2009, he would have been 71 years old today. While fans lost the icon far too soon after he died from a battle with pancreatic cancer, there are plenty of amazing performances of his to look back in. Some of his most notable roles were in films such as The Outsiders, Ghost, Dirty Dancing, and Road House. To honor the star, let’s go over some interesting facts about his life and career.

He was in a Disney ice show

DIRTY DANCING, Patrick Swayze, 1987

Artisan Entertainment/Everett Collection

I don’t know about you, but I have lots of fond memories of attending Disney ice shows as a kid. They continue to this day and fans may not realize that Swayze was in them once upon a time. Swayze grew up with a love of dance because his mother was the director of the Houston Jazz Ballet Company. After college, he toured for one year with the Disney on Parade ice show as Prince Charming. Soon after, he moved to New York City to pursue a dancing and stage career but ultimately had a knee injury that led him to focus more on acting.

He owned his own carpentry business called Nepotism, Inc.

BLACK DOG, Patrick Swayze, 1998, truck driver

Everett Collection

Before his career took off, Swayze and his wife Lisa decided to open a carpentry business employing brothers from both of their families. Since they were all family working together, they jokingly named the company Nepotism, Inc. Swayze reportedly didn’t even know much about carpentry but learned a lot through books and the business ended up being a very profitable one. They even renovated the kitchen of actress Jaclyn Smith!

He turned down an idea for his own cologne and other money-making products

ROAD HOUSE, Patrick Swayze, 1989

Everett Collection

In 1988, Swayze shared that after the success of Dirty Dancing, “There are people who want me to do a cologne. They want to call it Patrick. I was offered a fortune to make exercise videos. Posters, all kinds of stuff—something like $10 million worth. It’s insanity. I’m not going to do any of it.”

He almost didn’t get his famous role in ‘Ghost’

demi moore patrick swayze ghost

Everett Collection

One of his best films is 1990’s Ghost but he almost lost out on the role. The director, Jerry Zucker, once shared that he was not the first choice because he was mostly known for action movies at that time. However, when Swayze read the script with Zucker, he knew he was the right man for the job.

Happy birthday, Patrick! We miss you.

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July 2019

Celebrate the biggest summer movies of the ’80s, when moviegoing morphed from mere entertainment to blockbuster events.

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