How Julia Stiles Really Feels About a Save the Last Dance Reunion
Here's some slammin' news Save the Last Dance fans: In a Zoom chat with E! News Julia Stiles and Sean Patrick Thomas reveal they'd both be down for a reunion. Check out their vision.
Castawayand grossing more than $131 million. And two decades on, both leads feel that the message still resonates.Stiles points to one scene in which Derek's sister Chenille (played by then-newbie Washington) responds to Sara's claim that there aren't separate realities for white and Black people with the cutting, "That's what they teach you. We know different." While they didn't use the term white privilege at the time, Stiles noted, "Chenille definitely schools Sara on, you know, 'Oh, you think that all that's solved? But actually walk a mile in my shoes.'"
The interracial pairing was a rarity for a teen flick at the turn of the millennium, noted Thomas. "Even now in 2021, you don't see a whole lot of major studio films with an interracial couple as the two leads," he acknowledged. "It was remarkable for that time." And he appreciated that their story pushed beyond expected stereotypes. "It wasn't really about, you know, Black and white and it's so fraught," he explained. "It was simple, it was sweet, it was pure. It had innocence to it. And I think that's what resonates."
For Stilesthatwas the core of the film. As the high school senior works to regain her shaken self-confidence, "Sean's character believes in Sara," she said. "Their connection is something to me that's deeper and just really beautiful." headtopics.com
Moviestore/ShutterstockBackstreet Boys, the soundtrack reminding you that "You can do it, put your back into it," and all those nights at STEPPS—those were just a good time."It was fun," Thomas acknowledged. "I mean, I don't know what was going on with you, Julia, but a bunch of those dancers were hanging out in my trailer with liquor and it was on and crackin' in my trailer."
"Don't tell me these things! Don'ttellme these things!" Stiles lamented. "I was not of age. I couldn't have had a drink anyway. But just to know that was going on..."ParamountAt 30 years old, Thomas was very much able to imbibe.
"I remember one night in particularly where I was just like, 'Okay, fine. I'll take a drink,'" he recalled. "And then I went in and had to film and I was paranoid that I would, you know, be exposed as an unprofessional drunk. But it worked out. And I realized, I think that's what dancers do to loosen themselves up. So, looking back, I feel like I wasn't being unprofessional, I was just kind of trying to roll with the energy of the people that were trying to teach me."
Because he welcomed any expertise that would help him nail Johnson's choreography."I'm not a dancer at all," he admitted. "And so I was anxious for the opportunity to not screw it up when it came to filming. So if they were going to come and teach me stuff, I was very eager for it because I was so afraid of looking like a complete dork." headtopics.com
Despite years of training, Stiles was equally hard on herself, fretting that ballet had never been a particular strong suit for her. "There's a thing with dancers, you'll never be good enough, you'll never get it right," she explained. "You're always constantly refining, which is why I could never watch the movie now, because I would be way too critical of my port de bras or whatever."
ParamountThankfully she has the memories, all watercolored and rosy enough that neither she nor Thomas have ruled out stepping back into Sara and Derek's shoes."I'm envisioning, like, me doing theDebbie Allencharacter inFame, where now she's a dance teacher and she's smacking her cane against the ballet bar," Stiles joked. "And then, I don't know."Read more: E! News »
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One of my favorite films of the century! KatieCharlton28