Top Ten: Teen Dance Films

The follow up to Universal’s film dance sensation, Honey 2 follows the spirited 17-year-old, street dancer Maria Bennett. After a brush with the law, Maria has returned to her gritty Bronx roots to rebuild her life with nothing but a talent for street dance and a burning ambition to prove herself.  
To celebrate Honey 2  here are the Top 10 actors who began their careers as dancers:

10. Stomp The Yard
Depicting the conflict between two rival fraternities at a predominantly black American University and a promising dancer struggling to escape his troubled past, Stomp the Yard featured the debut big screen performances of some notable music stars, including Ne-Yo and Chris Brown. A day in the life at Kings College, Oxford, it isn’t.
9. Street Dance 3D
One of the only British teen dance films, Street Dance 3D was a commercial and critical success. Featuring some of the biggest names in British street dance, including the likes of Diversity, Flawless and George Sampson, Street Dance 3D told the tale of an inner-city dance crew who are forced to team up with a Ballet troupe in order to beat a rival crew.
8. High School Musical
A modern day musical adaption of Romeo and Juliet, with the Montague and Capulets being replaced by the Wildcat basketball team and the Scholastic Decathlon team, High School Musical took the world by storm on its release and made major stars of leading actor and actress, Zach Efron and Vanessa Hudgens.
7. You Got Served
Written and directed by Chris Stokes, manager of RnB stars Omarion, Marques Houston and B2K, You Got Served tells the story of two friends who must first win their city’s dance contest in order to achieve their dream of opening a recording studio. After what must have been a gruelling audition process, the film’s leading roles were handed to RnB stars Omarion, Marques Houston and B2K.
6. Honey
Launching the career of Jessica Alba, Honey tells the story of the talented and inspirational Honey Daniels, who uses here hot dance moves and to help set up and maintain a dance studio that acts as a lifeline for kids in the tough neighbourhood she grew up in.
5. Fame
With more spandex, leotards and leg warmers than any film before or since, Fame certainly left its mark on the cinematic landscape. Following a group of students through their studies at the New York High School of Performing Arts, Fame is full to the brim with drama, disco and dancing.
4. Save The Last Dance
Featuring Julia Stiles, Save the Last Dance tells the story of a promising ballet dancer who ends up in a predominantly black neighbourhood. After initially struggling to integrate, she manages to merge two worlds she is a part of and incorporates elements of both in her audition for the prestigious Julliard arts school.
3. Dirty Dancing
For a small-budget film that was originally only supposed to stay in cinemas for one weekend before going straight to video, ‘Dirty Dancing’ has certainly done pretty well for itself. It has earned over $214 million worldwide and was the first film to sell a million copies on home video. Making a star of its lead Patrick Swayze, Dirty Dancing proves that whatever your budget, if you get the elements of a teen dance film right, you really can have the time of your life.
2. Step Up 3D
Step Up 3D sets two battling street crews against one another as they set out to win the World Dance Jam contest. The most successful instalment of the hit worldwide franchise, Step Up 3D brought the audience so close to the world of street dance, they might as well have been spinning on their heads outside on the road. 
1. Grease
The classic musical, with a soundtrack that is jam-packed with disco classics, Grease is the universally loved story of two teenagers whose relationship struggles to survive the volatile and combative world of High School. Featuring John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John and an abundance of hair gel, Grease is the greatest demonstration of the cultural impact that teen dance films can make.

© BRWC 2010.

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Alton loves film. He is founder and Editor In Chief of BRWC.  Some of the films he loves are Rear Window, Superman 2, The Man With The Two Brains, Clockwise, Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, Trading Places, Stir Crazy and Punch-Drunk Love.


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