‘Grease’ Prequel ‘Rise of the Pink Ladies’ Moves to Paramount+

Jamie Donnelly, Susan Buckner, Olivia Newton-John, Didi Conn in Grease
Paramount Pictures/ Courtesy: Everett Collection

Grease is still the word as Paramount+ has picked up a 10-episode series, Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies, a prequel to the hugely popular musical.

HBO Max originally ordered the Annabel Oakes (Atypical) series (then titled Grease: Rydell High) back in October 2019; however, the project was dropped following a change in management at the network. Oakes remains on as showrunner, writer, and executive producer as the series moves over to the ViacomCBS streamer.

Rise of the Pink Ladies is set four years before the original Grease, before rock ‘n’ roll ruled and before the T-Birds were the coolest in the school. The story follows four fed-up, outcast girls (aka the Pink Ladies) who dare to have fun on their own terms, sparking a moral panic that will change Rydell High forever.

In the 1978 movie, the Pink Ladies (Rizzo, Frenchy, Jan, and Marty) were played by Stockard Channing (The West Wing), Didi Conn (Grease: Live), Jamie Donnelly (Ray Donovan), and Dinah Manoff (State of Grace). Paramount has yet to make any casting announcements regarding the prequel series.

Rise of the Pink Ladies isn’t the only Grease project in the works. Brett Haley (Hearts Beat Loud) is also set to direct a feature film prequel titled Summer Lovin’, produced by Paramount, Temple Hill and Picturestart.

Grease, originally written for the stage in 1971 by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey, is one of the most beloved musicals of all time. In addition to the classic 1978 film version, there has been a sequel (the less well-regarded Grease 2) and numerous international tours and revivals. In 2016, Fox aired Grease: Live, a musical reboot starring Aaron Tveit, Julianne Hough, Vanessa Hudgens, and Carly Rae Jepsen.