The up-and-down career of the actor and dancer who soared to stardom in Dirty Dancing and Ghost, but whose personal life has been filled with heartaches, including a knee injury that nearly cost him a leg, a sister's suicide, a serious drinking problem, a horse-riding accident that almost killed him, and his battle with pancreatic cancer.
Video from this Episode
Patrick Swayze - Ghost (7:49)
Patrick Swayze - Full Biography (45:30)
After years fearing his dance training would hold back his acting career, Patrick Swayze landed the role of Johnny Castle in "Dirty Dancing." Performing his own dancing and stunts, the movie made him an instant sensation.
Patrick Swayze moved to New York in 1975 to dance with the Eliot Feld ballet. In 1976, his dance career was almost ended by a staph infection. Once he recovered, he landed the lead role in "Grease" on Broadway.
Patrick Swayze campaigned heavily for the lead in "Ghost" and delivered the performance of a lifetime. His love scene with Demi Moore and his comedic scenes with Whoopi Goldberg are now a part of cinematic history.
Patrick Swayze soared to stardom in "Dirty Dancing" and "Ghost," but his personal life was filled with heartaches, including a knee injury that nearly cost him a leg, his sister's suicide, and his battle with pancreatic cancer.